The plantar fascia is a sheet of connective tissue, similar to a ligament or tendon that stretches from the heel to the toes, spanning the arch of the foot. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation and thickening of the plantar fascia. The “itis” suffix means “inflammation.” Plantar fasciitis is basically caused by chronic irritation of the arch of the foot due to excessive strain. So what causes this excessive strain to the point of pain and injury?
Most people’s problems develop slowly, and maybe quietly, over time; the result of adaptation in your kinetic chain (your movement system). Maybe years of the wrong kind of shoes have deconditioned the muscles in the foot that support the arch and have shorted and tightened the muscles of the calf. Maybe your body lacks the necessary hip stability and must adapt the way you move causing excessive toeing out, over-pronation and consequent stress on the plantar fascia. Usually there are a multitude of adaptations that have taken place over the years that have led you to the point of pain and injury.
Plantar Fasciitis can be a difficult condition to rid yourself of. Your foot is always on duty, it is always a weight bearing joint. People will often compound the problem by ignoring the pain and hoping it goes away, only seeking treatment when the pain is unbearable and they cannot walk on it.
First if you are experiencing pain on the bottom of the foot, have yourself evaluated by a practitioner that will assess the whole kinetic chain including the foot and ankle. Too often a “thorough evaluation” involves a five minute appointment and a script for painkillers or cortisone injections. If the question of why this is happening is not identified, it’s only a matter of time until the issue returns, usually with a vengeance.
Our doctors specialize in advance soft tissue treatments such as Active Release Technique and Graston Technique that have a proven track record of successful resolution of plantar fasciitis without the need of drugs or surgery. We are also a provider of custom foot orthotics from Foot Levelers. Please contact us and see how we can help.