What is it?
Plantar fasciitis is simply an inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is a thick band of connective tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot and connects the toes to the heel. It is the most common cause of heel pain.
In general, Plantar fasciitis only affects one foot, and the pain is usually worse in the morning or after sitting for long periods of time (i.e., when the tendon is tight). Basically, it feels like someone is stabbing a knife in your heel, although some people complain that the pain is more in their arch.
What causes it?
- Excessive pronation
- High or low arches
- Tight calf muscles or Achilles
- Shoes that don't fit well or are worn out
- Other risk factors include age and obesity... also, it is more common in women (wonder if that's because more women wear tight / ill-fitting shoes compared to men)
What can I do to prevent it?
Calf stretches and towel stretches
What can I do if I already have it?
- Rest rest rest...
- Ice ice ice...
- Physical therapy
- Break up scar tissue (from past injuries) in the calf, Achilles, ankle, and/or foot (rolling your foot on a golf ball or tennis ball)
- Anti-inflammatories and corticosteroids
- Strassburg sock
- Taping your foot
What are the best shoes for it?
- Ones with good arch support... stability shoes if you over-pronate... orthotics may also be necessary.
- But, the most important thing is to REPLACE YOUR SHOES WHEN THEY NEED TO BE (the recommendation is every 400-miles).