Exercises for Plantar Fasciitis

Exercises for Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a severe medical condition that causes pain in the heel and bottom of your foot. The condition could arise in one or both feet. The cause of this disorder hasn’t been pin-pointed yet but the conditions that will gradually lead to plantar fasciitis have been discovered.

Plantar fasciitis is the tear of the plantar fascia, the thick ligament that connects your toes to your heel. It is generally referred as the over-walking injury. Over-stretching and too much strain on the bottom of the foot cause tears in the tissue, and when this problem worsens the pain arises. Researchers have found out that around 80% of all pains on the bottom of the foot are caused by the plantar fasciitis.


There are a variety of treatment methods for this disorder. Plantar fasciitis is seen to be completely cured within 6 – 12 months, or even before if the problem is in its initial stages and the patient takes proper care of the foot by following all the treatment techniques word for word.

There are, in general, two kinds of medical treatment techniques for plantar fasciitis; Surgical and Non-surgical treatment.

Surgical treatment methods involve plantar fascia release surgery, which is done by cutting the ligament to free the fascia from discomfort.

Non-surgical treatment involves all the basic home-treatment such as using ice and NSAID drugs on the sore area. Other measures of non-surgical treatment involve using a cast on the lower leg, use of night splints and steroid injection shots on the bottom of the foot.

The most reliable treatment has been known to be appropriate stretches for your legs.

Exercises for Plantar Fasciitis

Stretching solutions are the best for victims of plantar fasciitis. Regardless of the cause of your particular problem, whether this is by being overweight or running and walking for prolonged periods, performing the right sets of exercises to stretch your plantar fascia tissue has been known to be the best way to soothe and relieve the pain caused by this disorder.

Taut muscles in your feet or calves aggravate plantar fasciitis. Performing stretching exercises focusing on your calves will aid you a great deal.

Follow the following steps to perform an exercise to stretch your calves:

  • The first step is to stand at an arm’s length from a wall
  • Now that you are in front of the wall, place your affected foot behind the other. For instance, if your left foot is the one affected, place your left foot behind the right
  • Gently bend your right leg forward. Do not be hasty about it as you might inflict further damage on your feet
  • You must keep your left knee straight and your left heel on the ground
  • You need to hold this stretch for 15 – 30 seconds
  • Release and repeat the practice for three times at least
  • Reverse the position of your legs, and repeat. Meaning, if your right foot is the affected one, place your left forward, keep your right knee straight and right heel on the ground

Don’t be confused about the differences between stretches for your Achilles tendon and stretches for your calves as both of them are same. The method of work out is the same and you will be stretching the same muscles and tissues with this exercise.

Note: Make sure you do not hold the stretches for too long.

How to make this exercise more effective

  • Placing a shoe under your affected foot will provide that much-needed support to maintain comfort to your fascia tissue
  • This stretching technique can be most effective if you place your affected leg behind with the toes directly pointed towards the heel of your other foot
  • It is best to do the reps about three times a day for maximized effect
  • This exercise targets the gastrocnemius muscle in the calf. It can be further improved by slightly bending both legs, which then loosens the soleus muscle in the lower calf

Seated Exercises

There are various forms of seated exercises that can help your relieve your plantar fasciitis by stretching the plantar fascia tissue.

  • One of the best seating exercises is to sit down and roll your foot back and forth over something like a bottle. You can do this over a frozen water bottle, ice-cold can etc., as the cold will also help you with the sore area
  • The next exercise will require you to sit cross-legged. Once seated in a cross-legged position, grab your big toe, pull it gently toward you and hold the stretch for 15 to 30 seconds. Remember not to hold the stretch for too long or too strongly. Do this three times and then the same with your other foot by reversing your cross-legged position
  • Towel stretches are another useful stretching exercise for the bottom of your foot. Fold the towel lengthwise. Once the towel is made into an exercise strap, sit down and place the folded towel under the arches of your both feet. Then, grab the ends of the towel and stretch your feet gently towards you by pulling the ends of the towel. Hold this position for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat this exercise three times

These exercises are not only useful to relieve your heel pain, but can also be done before work out to properly stretch your muscle tissues.

Note: Make sure you sit upright while performing these seated exercises.

Useful Tips

Make sure you limit all tasks that put your heels under extra pressure. Your recovery techniques are useless if you are still putting your heels under strain. You will need to start your workouts slowly. If you’re a runner, don’t burst into sprints, and frequently make stops to stretch your plantar fascia and Achilles tendon.

Whether you have experienced plantar fasciitis or not, make sure you have sturdy shoes whenever you leave the house. Properly cushioning your feet will reduce the amount of pressure on the bottom of your feet and help you to maintain proper health.

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