Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the plantar fascia, the band of connective tissue running from your heel bone to the front of your foot. It occurs when this band of tissue is overloaded or overstretched. This causes small tears in the fibers of the fascia, especially where the fascia meets the heel bone.
You can help to prevent plantar fasciitis in many different ways…
1. Reduce the stress
Land evenly on the middle of your foot instead of heel striking. This keeps your Plantar tendon relaxed and reduces the impact to your heels. If you run, alternate running with other sports that will not cause heel pain, run on soft surfaces and visit a specialist to make sure you’re wearing the proper shoes for your foot type and gait.
2. Stretch, stretch, stretch
You can find a list of stretching exercises here. Be gentle, go slow. You’re trying to relieve the tightness in the area, not prepare for a game or race.
Learn to relax your lower legs, especially your ankles and calves, whenever you’re walking, running, sitting or standing. Tension held anywhere in your legs or glutes will pull on the Plantar tendon when you move.
4. Maintain an healthy weight
Plantar fasciitis is common in obese people and in pregnant women, perhaps because their extra body weight overloads the delicate plantar fascia.
5. Put on supportive shoes
Put on supportive shoes as soon as you get out of bed. Going barefoot or wearing slippers can put stress on your feet.
6. Massage after stressful activities
Ice massage can be used on the bottom of the foot after stressful athletic activities.