4 Easy Stretches for Plantar Fasciitis Pain
It’s great when you tell your mechanic about that squeaky sound you hear when you start your car, and he or she says, “Yup, sounds like the serpentine belt.” Their experience to immediately recognize what is wrong gives you the confidence that your car is in good hands.
It may not be quite that simple when you ask our foot doctors how you can relieve morning heel pain, because your discomfort could be caused by many things. However, if you describe a stabbing pain under your heel when you put weight on it after a night’s sleep or sitting for a long period of time, our answer will often be, “Yes, that sounds like plantar fasciitis.”
The condition is caused by an inflammation under the heel bone, and could also involve further damage to the plantar fascia—the ligament band under your foot that supports your arch. The good news is that there are plantar fasciitis stretches you can do at home to help relieve the pain. Here are four of them:
- Calf stretches: brace your arms against a wall and slowly step forward with one leg while bending the knee slightly, keeping the back knee straight with the heel on the ground. You should feel a stretch in the upper calf muscle, but it shouldn’t hurt. Hold 15-30 seconds and release. Repeat 3 times, and then do the other leg. Now do the entire set again with the back knee slightly bent so the lower calf muscles are also stretched.
- Plantar fascia stretch #1: Sit on a chair and cross your legs. Grab your toes with your fingers and gently pull them toward you, holding 15-30 seconds and repeating 3 times. You should feel a gentle stretch under your arch, but no pain. Repeat with the other foot.
- Stretch #2: While seated, gently roll your foot arch back and forth over a can of frozen orange juice or a frozen water bottle for 60 seconds. Repeat with the other foot.
- #3: Still sitting, grab the ends of a towel and loop it under both arches. Then lift and straighten your legs and pull your toes toward you gently, holding for 15-30 seconds and repeating 3 times.
Do the stretches every day and your heel pain should improve. If it doesn’t, call our foot specialists at Far West Podiatric Medical Group by dialing 310) 675-0900 and we can evaluate your condition and decide what further treatment may be needed. Custom orthotics have solved heel pain problems for many of our patients and may be the answer for you. Our office is located in Hawthorne, CA and serves the South Bay area with expert foot care, so contact us or schedule an appointment online today.