Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

Plantar Fasciitis is a painful inflammation of the plantar fascia (arch tendon of the foot). It is an overuse injury which gets worse from activities like gymnastics (tumbling), rope skipping, sprinting etc. Heel spurs are bony growths on the heel bone (calcaneus) where the arch tendon (plantar fascia) is attached to the heel. The symptoms are similar but an inflammation can heal faster than a spur. Heel spurs can be seen on an x-ray picture. Long term inflammations of the arch tendon can lead to heel spurs. Find more sports injury related topices at sports injuries main.

Description: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

  • As mentioned above, plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the arch tendon of the foot. The pain sometimes also radiates forward towards the ball of the foot. Plantar Fasciitis and heel spurs are not exactly the same, but very similar. (see text above) Plantar Fascia: Broad, thick band of tissue on the foot sole (leads from the heel to the front of the foot) An inflammation can occur when a part of the tendon ruptures. This happened to me during my military time in austria: (Bad shoes - walking in snow 16 hours a day - plus I did my wushu and gymnastics training every day, no matter what) It took me 5 month until i got rid if the inflammation.

Symptoms: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

  • Heel pain: Pain under the heel where the fascia (arch tendon) is attached to the heel bone (usually on the inside)
  • If you adjust your walking style because of the painful inside of the heel, the pain might radiate to the outside.
  • When you stand up in the morning, pain might be even worse. Sleeping with warm but not tight socks might help a bit. Don't run or rope skip in the morning or in a cold environment.

Who is susceptible: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

  • People who don't stretch their calf muscles. The foot sole might become tense if your calves are always tense. This again can lead to a consistent stress on the arch tendon when you walk or even when you rest.
  • Practitioners of sports where you bounce from the balls of your feet: gymnastics, rope skipping, sprinting, volley ball etc.
  • People who train in a cold environment and don't warm up sufficient.
  • People with high or low arched feet.

Treatment: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

  • Like in most inflammation cases, you are recommended to start resting as soon as possible. Rest until you feel no pain at all. You can train your thighs and your upper body for a while. There are taping techniques and supports for plantar fasciitis and heel spurs.
    (to take of the pressure from the arch tendon when you walk during work or school) However, taping the foot too firm can worsen the pain. (consult a professional to teach you how to tape the foot)
  • Apply ice to help reduce pain and inflammation. Keep in mind that working out when the arch tendon is cold can make the injury worse !!!
  • Stretch your arch tendon and your calf muscles. But please.... !!! Don't apply ballistic stretches (that's the worst thing you could do) The reason why the arch tendon becomes inflamed is lack of flexibility. So stretch, stretch and stretch to prevent plantar
    fasciitis in the first place. The arch tendon often tensions when you sleep. There are special shoes which take pressure from the tendon when you rest. (ask an orthopedist)
  • Anti-inflammantes. (diclofenac etc,... consult your doctor)
  • In some cases cortisone injection are necessary. (against the inflammation)
  • In the worst case a surgery will be necessary.

Trainer advice: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

  • Warm up with socks and / or shoes.
  • Avoid activities where you jump from the balls of your feet in a cold environment.
  • If you feel a little pain, REST !

Videos: Plantar Fasciitis & Heel Spurs

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