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Keys to Plantar Fasciitis Exercises

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Filed Under (Fitness, Foot Injuries) by Rick Kaselj on 13-02-2011

 

Keys to Exercising with Plantar Fasciitis

 

• Symptoms of plantar fasciitis are usually worse after awakening. To reduce pain, it is recommended to start stretching your plantar fascia before getting out of bed. Before sitting up, flex your foot up and down 10 times. Follow this exercise with towel stretch. Put a long towel at the bedside before sleeping. Keeping your back straight, loop the towel around the top of the affected foot. Gradually pull the towel towards your body.

 

• After exercising, you may apply ice massage to the affected area or you may roll a cold soda over the arch of your foot for five minutes to relieve or prevent pain. Ice pack applications for 15 to 20 minutes are also recommended.

 

• Massage the plantar fascia by running your thumb or fingers along the fascia. It is best to ask your physical therapist to teach you how to do this technique appropriately.

 

• You may ask your athletic trainer or physical therapist to tape your plantar fascia for improved activity tolerance during exercise and weight bearing activities. Taping is also known to distribute the applied stress away from the fascia.

 

• Before exercising, do your warm up exercises, consisting of plantar fascia and heel cord stretches for 5 to 10 minutes. After exercising, do your cool down exercises for 5 to 10 minutes.

 

• Wear well-fitting and comfortable athletic shoes with good heel support when exercising. Choose shoes with excellent shock absorbing qualities.

 

If you want to know more about plantar fasciitis, then check out Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 days here:
Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 Days

Rick Kaselj, MS

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Stretching Exercises For Plantar Fasciitis

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Filed Under (Fitness, Foot Injuries, Plantar Fasciitis) by Rick Kaselj on 11-02-2011

Stretching Exercises for Plantar Fasciitis

 

An excellent exercise regimen for plantar fasciitis includes gentle, prolonged, and pain-free stretching exercises of the Achilles tendon complex (the tendon that is attached to the heel and calf), plantar fascia, and gastrocnemius-soleus complex (Two muscles in the calf area of the lower leg.). Among all conservative measures, it is believed that stretching exercises have the highest success rates for pain relief.

 

The plantar fascia stretches are, by far, the most valuable exercises in treating plantar fasciitis. It is recommended that you do these exercises first thing in the morning, before walking.  The following plantar fascia stretches can be done three times a day:

 

• Stand with your hands against the wall. The affected leg is positioned slightly behind the other leg. Securely keep your heels flat on the floor. Keeping the injured leg straight and your heels on the ground, gradually lean forward, and bend the uninjured leg until you feel a stretch in the lower part of the injured leg. Hold the position for 10 to 15 seconds, and release. Repeat the exercise 5 to 10 times.

 

• Sit on a well-supported chair, and place the affected foot on the opposite knee. Grab the affected heel using the opposite hand and let the other hand pull the toes back, especially the big toe. A stretch should be felt within the arch. Hold the stretch for 10 to 30 seconds, and release. Repeat the exercise 5 to 10 times per session or as tolerated. You may perform this exercise three times a day.

 

• Another way to do the previous exercise is to sit on the floor with the legs straight. Loop a resistant band around the foot of the leg to be stretched. Gently pull the forefoot towards the knee, and hold the stretch for 10 to 30 seconds. Repeat 5 to 10 times or as tolerated. You may push your foot against the band to strengthen your calf.

 

Achilles tendon stretch, hamstring stretch, stair stretch, toe stretch, and soleus stretch are some stretching exercises that focus mainly on improving the flexibility of the plantar fascia.

 

If you want to find out how to get rid of your heel pain once and for all, then check out Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 days here:
Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 Days

Rick Kaselj, MS

How Painful of a Problem is Plantar Fasciitis?

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Filed Under (Fitness, Foot Injuries, Plantar Fasciitis) by Rick Kaselj on 09-02-2011

How Common, and what are the Risk Factors, for Plantar Fasciitis?

 

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain. Around 2 million Americans are treated for plantar fasciitis on an annual basis. This figure accounts for 11 to 15% of all foot symptoms that require professional or medical treatment each year (Singh, Silverberg & Milne, 2009).  Plantar fasciitis is among the top five causes of foot injuries in professional athletes. Athletes, who constantly perform activities in which the weight is taken on the ball of the foot, such as running, jumping, and landing, are at greater risk for plantar fasciitis. Cross-country and track runners, tennis players, basketball players, volleyball players, and sprinters are also at risk.

 

Plantar fasciitis is experienced by non-athletes as well. The unadjusted incidence rate of plantar fasciitis in U.S. military services was 10.5 per 1000 persons-years (Scher et al, 2009). It is estimated that 10% of the general population in the United States will experience plantar heel pain in their lifetime (Crawford, Atkins & Edwards, 2000).

 

Plantar fasciitis is most common among people ages 40 to 60. Runners below the age of 20 are also susceptible, however. Women are two times more susceptible than men to develop plantar fasciitis.

 

Obesity, habitual barefoot walking, prolonged wearing of house slippers, inactivity, and high-impact aerobic exercises can increase the risk of plantar fasciitis. Speed workouts, graded hill work outs, and plyometrics (athletic jumping workouts) are also implicated in plantar fascia degeneration. Rigorous exercises and error training errors have been identified as important causative factors for this painful condition. In addition, high-risk behaviors, such as running on unpadded or poorly padded surfaces and using shoes with minimal cushion are known predisposing factors. These practices can place a lot of stress on the heel during activity.

 

Signs and Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

 

Repeated trauma or chronic pressure placed on the plantar fascia can constantly irritate the nerves that carry pain signals, resulting in severe, intense, or burning heel pain. The pain is commonly felt in the arch area or on the underside of the heel bone and may extend to the toes. The pain is most severe with the first steps after a long period of non-weight bearing rest. Painful walking after a night’s sleep is a chief complaint of patients with plantar fasciitis. The pain may be severe enough to cause intolerable barefoot walking.

 

In advanced cases, the pain may radiate with a tingling sensation. The pain lessens as the day goes on, but prolonged standing and walking and localized application of manual pressure appear to intensify the pain. Movements in which the forefoot moves towards the lower leg, such as heel-raises and toe-walking (walking on tip-toes) can increase the pain. The windlass test, in which the forefoot is passively moved towards the body, can elicit heel pain. This makes it one of the most important tests used to diagnose plantar fasciitis. Antalgic posture, which involves walking or standing on the foot’s lateral border, is also a common indicator of plantar fasciitis.

 

Plantar fasciitis usually affects unilaterally. Bilateral symptoms are more likely caused by systemic arthritis.

 
Rick Kaselj, MS
 

Here are some other plantar fasciitis blog posts that may interest you:

Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar Fasciitis and Exercise
 
If you like to learn more about plantar fasciitis, then check out Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 days here:
 
Plantar Fasciitis Relief in 7 Days
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Interested in Barefoot Running?

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Filed Under (Fitness, Foot Injuries, Knee Injury, Knee Pain) by Rick Kaselj on 08-11-2010

Today I have a guest blog post for you.

It is with Jon-Erik Kawamoto.

 

In the guest blog post Jon-Erik talks about something that has been a buzz in the fitness industry of late, barefoot running.

 

Take it away Jon-Erik.

 

To Barefoot Run?

I’ve been asked lately what I thought about barefoot running and found myself unable to answer. While I have read that everyone should run barefoot because it reduces injury risk and forces a more natural running stride, I also read that barefoot running wasn’t for everyone.  Apparently, because of the barefoot running craze, physical therapists were still busy with running injuries…not from those wearing supportive shoes, but those who thought they could run mile after mile barefoot!

Barefoot running has received a lot of attention lately thanks to books like Christopher McDougall’s, Born to Run.

 

This entertaining book comes highly recommended to running enthusiasts, and is about the Tarahumara tribe based in northern Mexico.  This tribe is also known as Rarámuri, which means “runners on foot” or “those who run fast.”  The Rarámuri run in homemade sandals that only provide a thin barrier to the rocky, desert terrain – without injury. This is a very interesting fact considering they run extremely long distances (up to and more than 100 miles at a time).

 

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Causes of Plantar Fasciitis

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Filed Under (Fitness, Foot Injuries, Plantar Fasciitis) by Rick Kaselj on 14-05-2010

The Gait Cycle and Plantar Fascia

Understanding the mechanics of the foot can help explain the development of plantar fasciitis.  Connecting the hind foot and the fore foot, the plantar fascia undergoes tension during gait (walking). The action of the plantar fascia during weight bearing is compared to a windlass or a rubber band. When there is no weight on the foot and plantar fascia, the elastic band is relaxed.  As weight is put on the foot and the plantar fascia, the elastic band stretches out.  A band that is too short results in a high arch, whereas a band that is too long results in a low arch, which is commonly termed as flatfeet.

The gait cycle refers to the continuous repetitive pattern of walking. One complete gait cycle consists of 2 main phases: the stance and the swing. The stance phase is the part of the cycle where the foot is in contact with the ground. The swing phase is the period when the foot is off the ground. The stance phase is further discussed, as it has a more significant effect on a plantar fascia injury.
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What is Plantar Fasciitis?

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Filed Under (Ankle Injury, Fitness, Foot Injuries, Plantar Fasciitis) by Rick Kaselj on 05-05-2010

What isPlantar fasciitis?

Introduction

Plantar fasciitis is an overuse injury involving the plantar fascia, a tough, fibrous band of tissue that supports the longitudinal arch of the foot.  Also known as jogger’s heel, tennis heel or Policeman’s heel, plantar fasciitis is one of the most common injuries affecting athletes and individuals who are constantly on their feet for a long period of time. Severe heel pain, usually is described as knife-like especially during the first few steps in the morning.

According to the American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine, heel pain is the most common presenting symptom of patients who seek treatment from podiatric practitioners. It is estimated that each year, 10% of foot injuries associated with running are attributable to plantar fasciitis (Buchbinder, 2004).

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5 Things that I Learned when Watching Butler & Duke University While at the 2010 NCAA Final Four in Indianapolis

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Filed Under (Ankle Injury, Exercise Rehabilitation, Fitness, Foot Injuries) by Rick Kaselj on 08-04-2010

It was an amazing weekend in Indianapolis at the NCAA March Madness Final Four.

The city of Indianapolis was a great place to visit, the event of the NCAA Final Four was incredible and the basketball was superb.

While I was sitting in the stands watching the Duke Blue Devils celebrate the National Championship, I began to reflect on what I learned over the weekend.

5 Things that I Learned when Watching Butler & Duke University While at the 2010 NCAA Final Four in Indianapolis

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Plantar Fasciitis and Exercise

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Filed Under (Exercise Rehabilitation, Fitness, Fitness Education, Foot Injuries) by Rick Kaselj on 17-03-2010

Exercise and Plantar Fasciitis

Description:

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, accounting for 11 to 15% of all foot symptoms that needed medical treatment each year. It’s estimated that 10% of the general population in the United States have plantar fasciitis.  A key component in the recovery from plantar fasciitis is exercise.  The role of exercises for plantar fasciitis is it is vital in a helping with a speed up recovery, decreases pain, decreases the risk of reoccurrence and helps creates an action plan on what to do if symptoms return.  The focus of the plantar fasciitis and exercise webinar will be exercise program design and exercises for a client that has plantar fasciitis.

What you will learn during the webinar:

– The exercise to DO and NOT do when training a client recovering from plantar fasciitis
– Essential components of an exercise rehabilitation program when training a client recovering from plantar fasciitis
– Recommended and research backed exercises when training a client recovering from plantar fasciitis
– Key structures involved in plantar fasciitis

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