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MOVING WITH PLANTAR FASCIITIS

Hi, welcome to my new blog on Plantar fasciitis, a condition very common to anyone with feet. It is the inflammation of the sheet-like tissue in the sole of the foot just near the heel.

Our fascia plays a very important role during weight-bearing activities. It acts as a shock absorber, helps in proper weight distribution in the foot, and acts as a spring to help the foot clear the ground aka Push off.

As it is constantly used it often gets overused and inflamed.

Common symptoms are

Pain in the heel during standing and walking.

Burning in the sole

Severe pain in the morning as soon as getting up from the bed which eases a bit with movements.

Most patients find walking painful and ask me if they could avoid it completely for some time. My answer to this is no and here is why

Walking if done correctly improves the circulation to the foot, motor control of the small muscles, and maintains the extensibility of the fascia. All of these are essential for quicker healing and being pain-free. Listing a few strategies which have helped my patients

Barefoot walking on soft surfaces like carpet, beach sand, or grass. This can be done for 5 minutes every 1 hour.

Toe splay–  Be seated in a comfortable position. Keep the foot relaxed. Try to open the toes out keeping the toes and the heel in contact with the ground. Repeat 3 to 5 times every hour.

Foot mobility work-  Be seated as above with feet hip-width distance. Without changing the position of the heel curl the toes such that you would want to scrunch a towel under the foot. Repeat as above.

Wring stretch- Place the foot to be stretched on the opposite knee. Hold the toes loosely with one hand and the heel with another. Gently turn the toes in one direction and the heel in the opposite direction. You will feel a stretch or pull in the sole of the foot. Hold the position for 10 to 15 counts. Can repeat as above. Can do it the first thing in the morning as soon as you wake up.

Ball rolling– Place the foot on a tennis ball and gently roll lengthwise. Repeat 3-5 times every hour.

Hope these strategies help you to manage your pain and be pain-free… Take care

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