7 tips to take the pain out of plantar fasciitis this spring
Spring is here and with it comes a change in our activity levels, spending more time outside, pursuing new fitness goals or just enjoying the change of seasons.
However, the joy of a new season can quickly turn to frustration if you experience foot pain. If you’ve had pain in your feet before you know that it can quickly change the quality of your life, setting you off course from your goals and leisure. One of the most common foot injuries is plantar fasciitis (PLAN-tar fashee-EYE-tiss).
Plantar fasciitis is inflammation (-itis) of the connective tissue (fascia) on the bottom of the foot (plantar). The plantar fascia originates on your metatarsal heads and inserts on the calcaneus (heel bone). The function is to support the arch and act as shock absorber for the foot.
Plantar fasciitis causes sharp pain the bottom of the heel and is usually most intense in the morning or after sitting for prolonged periods. Pain often worsens after activity, not necessarily during activity.
What causes this pain? Wearing improper footwear, poor foot biomechanics, overuse, tight calf muscles and age are all factors. Fortunately, New Balance Detroit has researched several ways to treat this injury or avoid it altogether.
From now until May 30, if you shop for footwear at New Balance Detroit’s Farmington Hills and Troy locations and mention this article, you’ll receive additional savings.
1. Support: Make sure that you wear shoes that provide proper support, particularly through the middle of the foot. Avoid going barefoot as much as possible, even when you are walking around the house. You might consider adding a slip-on shoe for around the home, like the New Balance 900 slip-on, for protection on hard floor surfaces.
2. Stretching: Calf and foot stretches are crucial before and after exercise or physical activity. It’s important to not only stretch the bottom of the foot, but also to stretch tight calf muscles. Massaging the foot and calf with a tennis ball or massage ball will also help loosen the fascia.
3. Strengthening: Once the pain dissipates, it is important to strengthen the foot to prevent the symptoms from returning. Suggested exercises include the single leg balance, toe scrunches and ankle alphabets — using your ankle and foot to trace the letters of the alphabet in the air.
4. Rest: If you can, rest your foot and try to keep weight off it. If you can’t, then it’s best to “play it by pain” and use pain to dictate your level of activity.
5. Ice: Icing your injury might help reduce some inflammation and help with pain control. Fill a water bottle with water, freeze it, take it out and roll the bottom of your foot over the bottle for 8-10 minutes about three to four times a day.
6. Patience and consistency: Treating plantar fasciitis can be a long slow process. Be consistent with the recommendations and you should start to notice improvements with three to four weeks.
7. Products: Certain shoes, insoles and massage balls can be used to help reduce plantar fasciitis or avoid it altogether. For a highly cushioned, light weight running shoe, New Balance recommends the Fresh Foam More shoe, available in men’s and women’s sizes and styles. The New Balance Arch Support Insole fits practically any shoe and offers the ultimate comfort and stability.
To learn more about shoes and insoles that that are best for your lifestyle and for custom fitting with a specialist, visit New Balance Detroit’s stores in Farmington Hills and Troy. Mention this article now through May 30, 2019 when making a purchase at your local New Balance Detroit store for additional savings.
Members of the editorial and news staff of The Detroit News were not involved in the creation of this content.