This article is from the Mayo Clinic
Do your first few steps out of bed in the morning cause severe pain in your heel? Or does your heel hurt after jogging or playing tennis? Most commonly, heel pain is caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia — the tissue along the bottom of your foot that connects your heel bone to your toes.
Plantar fasciitis causes stabbing or burning pain that’s usually worse in the morning because the fascia tightens (contracts) overnight. Once your foot limbers up, the pain of plantar fasciitis normally decreases, but it may return after long periods of standing or after getting up from a seated position.
Under normal circumstances, your plantar fascia acts like a shock-absorbing bowstring, supporting the arch in your foot. But, if tension on that bowstring becomes too great, it can create small tears in the fascia. Repetitive stretching and tearing can cause the fascia to become irritated or inflamed. The causes of plantar fasciitis can be:
Physical activity overload. Plantar fasciitis is common in long-distance runners. Jogging, walking or stair climbing also can place too much stress on your heel bone and the soft tissue attached to it, especially as part of an aggressive new training regimen. Even household exertion, such as moving furniture or large appliances, can trigger the pain.
Arthritis. Some types of arthritis can cause inflammation in the tendons in the bottom of your foot, which may lead to plantar fasciitis.
Faulty foot mechanics. Being flat-footed, having a high arch or even having an abnormal pattern of walking can adversely affect the way weight is distributed when you’re on your feet, putting added stress on the plantar fascia.
Improper shoes. Shoes that are loose, lack arch support or the ability to absorb shock don’t protect your feet. If you regularly wear shoes with high heels, your Achilles tendon — which is attached to your heel — can contract and shorten, causing strain on the tissue around your heel.
By following these self-care tips, you may be able to eliminate heel pain without further treatment:
Apply ice. Try ice massage. Freeze a water-filled paper cup and roll it over the site of discomfort for about five to seven minutes. Regular ice massage can help reduce pain and inflammation.
Decrease your miles. You probably won’t have to permanently retire your running or walking shoes, but it’s a good idea to cover shorter distances until pain subsides.
Add arch supports to your shoes. Inexpensive over-the-counter arch supports take the tension off the plantar fascia and help absorb shock. (Superfeet & Sole inserts)
Try acupressure techniques. Apply pressure to your heel by using the Foot Rubz or Foot Wheel, or tennis ball with the arch of your foot while you are standing and stabilized. This can help reduce pain and increase blood flow.
Stretch your arches. The Pro-Stretch will stretch and strengthen your plantar fascia, Achilles tendon and calf muscles.
Night splints. Your Doctor may recommend The Strassburg Sock, which holds the plantar fascia and Achilles tendon in a lengthened position overnight so that they can be stretched more effectively.
Visit Fleet Feet Sports – we can help you & carry tools to help you
1. Strassburg Night Sock/Splint
2. DJO aircast for heel and achilles
3. Foot Rubz
4. The stick – to work out calf tightness
5. Pro-Stretch – to lengthen calf muscle
6. Superfeet & Sole insert to properly support heel & arch
7. Biofreeze – to temporarily relieve heel pain