So what gives? Our Rittenhouse PT team took a look.
Plantar Fasciitis can often be the cause.
To which you might ask: “Huh? What exactly is that?”
So we asked our Rittenhouse PT doctor Lauren Gastall and our exercise physiologist – Tom Herpen to break it down. And to offer a few solutions for pain relief.
First, your plantar fascia is a long thick band of layered tendons. It runs from behind the toes to your heel.
Second, it’s like a tie rod that holds your feet together. And it supports your arch. So, it bears a lot of weight and takes a lot of stress.
Third, each of those tendon bands overflows with nerve endings. When you irritate the plantar fascia you’ll feel pain. Often, lots of pain that can become chronic.
What causes plantar fasciitis?
Lauren and Tom divide causes into two categories: natural and induced.
- Natural causes include flat feet or high arches, over pronating when you walk and weight.
- Induced causes include over stretching your arch and trauma from running on hard surfaces or hills. Improper footwear doesn’t help.
(You can learn more here).
What can help plantar fasciitis? Here’s what our Rittenhouse PT team suggests:
- Rest. Get off your feet. Keep them elevated. Seems simple. And it helps.
- Stretch your calves (the gastroc-soleus complex). Here’s a great video. This’ll strengthen the intrinsic muscles in your feet and help stabilize your hips and knees. This reduces stress.
- Check your gait. Over-pronating or turning your feet out can aggravate plantar fasciitis. Our exercise physiologists can review your situation – and you should consult a foot doctor.
- Consider an arch support or orthotic if your doctor suggests it. They do just what it sounds like: support your arch and relieve pressure. (The PrivatGym™ | Rittenhouse PT team finds everyone at Philadelphia Runner helpful when you’re looking for an arch support or appropriate shoes.
Here at The PrivatGym™ | Rittenhouse we still believe in Little Feat’s lyric: “Feets don’t fail me now.”