This is an extremely common condition in runners, involving inflammation of the tough fibrous band of tissue (fascia) connecting the heel to the base of the toes. It is characterised by acute heel pain, which is often worse first thing in the morning.
It’s pretty important to not only alleviate symptoms but also address the causative factors or this condition will reoccur.
What to do:
- Initially rest and off loading the tissues is very important.
- Rest – Ease off running/ stop. Maintain fitness with swimming or cycling.
- Local ice treatment to help pain- rolling base of foot on cold can or plastic bottle may help take the edge off the pain.
- Taping – may be helpful if very acute.
- Massage to release calf muscle tightness also the use of a foam roller to help get into those tight areas can be really helpful.
- Gentle foot stretches and calf stretches.
- Exercises to strengthen foot muscles and improve proprioception are very important.
- Choose shoes with good heel cushioning and wearing trainers that control excessive foot pronation may be necessary.
Importantly: consider your biomechanics. The way you move may well be at the root of this.
Do you have weakness in the gluteal muscles or poor stability around the pelvis?
Is there muscular tightness further up the leg and poor balance causing over pronation and resulting in an overload stress on the plantar fascia ?