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Runner’s Practical Guide To Treat And Prevent Plantar Fasciitis

Runners often experience an irritation of the plantar fascia where it attaches to the heel bone and runs along the bottom of the foot. Plantar fasciitis can also be caused by biomechanical flaws, including flat, feet with high arches and a tight Achilles tendon. Excessive pronation and sudden increases in training mileage as well as the running shoe and the running surfaces can cause the foot injury.  
Plantar fasciitis for runners is characterized by a sharp pain in the heel and arch of the foot. Any nerve pain is clinically known as neuropathy . Little is known as to the exact cause of neuropathic pain, or nerve pain.
Plantar fasciitis for runners is characterized by a sharp pain in the heel and arch of the foot. Any nerve pain is clinically known as neuropathy . Little is known as to the exact cause of neuropathic pain, or nerve pain.
Runners may be able to continue their routine by making adjustments to treat the root cause of the injury. For some, continuing your normal running routine may actually cause further damage to the plantar fasciitis ligament, worsening the condition.
Preventing & Treating Plantar Fasciitis
Treating any injury starts with accurately assessing the extent of the condition. The absence or presence of acute pain may not necessarily determine the extent of the injury.  Don’t risk further injury, if pain is present for more than a few weeks make an appointment with your podiatrist or physical therapist to examine the injury.
Treat your heel or foot pain by resting for a few days while stretching your feet to test the extent of the injury. Worn or non-supportive shoes may be a contributing factor to your plantar fasciitis. Carefully consider all contributing factors from your running shoes to the mechanics of your foot strike and the intensity of your workouts.
Physical Therapy
  1. Massage both feet regardless if the pain is in just one foot (roll a golf ball under your foot) and apply ice (roll a frozen bottle of water under your foot).
  2. Achilles Tendon Stretch: Stand with your affected foot behind your healthy one. Point the toes of the back foot toward the heel of the front foot, and lean into a wall. Bend the front knee and keep the back knee straight, heel firmly planted on the floor.
  3. Plantar Fascia Stretch: Sit down, and place the foot with heel pain across your knee. Using the hand on the side affected by plantar fasciitis, pull your toes back toward your shin until you feel a stretch in your arch. Run your thumb along your foot—you should feel tension.
Orthotics, foot taping, cortisone injections, night splints, and anti-inflammatories decrease symptoms significantly in most instances of foot or heel pain. Some runners who continue to experience symptoms may require surgery. Consult your doctor to consider all options for treatment.
Running should make you feel healthier, not put you in excruciating pain. If you have mild plantar fasciitis, listen to your body. You may have to reduce the intensity of your workouts or take a few extra days rest to recovery. Never discount any pain, stretch before and after every workout.
To learn more about how physical therapy can help treat plantar fasciitis, set up a free exploratory examination with one of our doctors today.
Moriarty Physical Therapy is the premier physical therapist provider here in the Hudson Valley with centers located near you. To find out more about physical therapy or to book your first appointment with a physical therapist, visit our website at or contact Moriarty Physical Therapy at (845) 454-4137.

Schedule a FREE 15-minute Exploration Visit

Come visit one of our physical therapy clinics in New York or North Carolina and one of our Doctors of Physical Therapy will do a 15-minute consultation to see if physical therapy is right for you. In the consultation, we’ll help determine the source of pain and movement restrictions to see if you would benefit from physical therapy or might need the assistance of another healthcare professional. If so, we’ll make a referral and help speed up achieving your health goal.

You have nothing to lose; the screening is free! And if physical therapy could help you, we can perform the examination right then–even without a prescription–with Direct Access (covered by insurance).

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