Plantar Fasciitis and Physiotherapy

By Max Insa

Plantar fasciitis and physiotherapy

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of plantar heel pain. Plantar fasciitis affects both sedentary and athletic people and is thought to result from chronic overload either from lifestyle or exercise. Even so, the exact histopathology is not fully understood, it is currently thought to be a degeneration of the plantar fascia and a consequent creation of scar tissue which contributes to a thickening of the same.

What are the risk factors?
– Obesity
– Flat feet / High-arched feet
– Overpronation of the foot (inward roll)
– Shortened Achilles tendon
– Limited ankle dorsiflexion
– Weak plantar flexor muscles / weak intrinsic muscles of the foot
– Poor alignment
– Deconditioning
– Poor footwear

The patient usually presents with gradual onset of pain over the medial side of the plantar heel that is most noticeable when taking the first few steps in the morning. The pain may get better after a short period of walking, but returns when performing activities that involve prolonged weight-bearing, such as standing, walking or running. The patient may also complain that heel pain worsens after repeat weight-bearing following a period of rest, such as standing after a period of sitting at a desk.

How can physiotherapy help?
– Strengthening of the plantar flexor muscles
– Strengthening of the intrinsic muscles of the foot
– Improving the ankle dorsiflexion
– Improve the alignment and biomechanics
– Myofascial release
– Shockwave therapy
– Education on activity modification
– Stretching of the plantar fascia and muscles
– Plan the return to activity/sport

Recovering from a plantar fasciitis is usually a slow process, however the best results are seen when the person starts early with the treatment.

QubeCore Sports & Rehab offers Physiotherapy services in North Vancouver for a wide range of injuries and conditions. To book your appointment with Max Insa, call 604.210.2274 or simply BOOK ONLINE

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