I do not know if I mentioned this before, but I found out about a month and a half ago that I have plantar fasciitis. Initially, my pain started off as a sharp, stabbing pain on the inside of my arch, specifically on the inside of my big toe. For a while, I thought I was developing bunions. Because plantar fasciitis is known for pain on the bottom of the feet, specifically when you wake up in the morning, I ruled it out. I didn’t have pain (that I realized) on the bottom of my feet and did not realize that my stiff feet in the morning was actually a symptom. I thought it would be a more specific pain.
After about 6 months of these symptoms, I decided to ask a professor of mine, who is also an Athletic Trainer. She confirmed that I do in fact have plantar fasciitis. What is plantar fasciitis, you ask?
First, I have to tell you what the plantar fascia is. Your plantar fascia is connective tissue that, in short, that runs from the base of your heel bone (calcaneus) to the base of your toe bones (phalanges). See the picture below. The white band is your plantar fascia. Plantar fasciitis is when that white band is irritated (hence the red burst bubble…that signifies pain). Why would that white band be so irritated? Here is a list of plantar fasciitis causes from webmd.com:
- Your feet roll inward too much when you walk (excessive pronation ).
- You have high arches or flat feet.
- You walk, stand, or run for long periods of time, especially on hard surfaces.
- You are overweight.
- You wear shoes that don’t fit well or are worn out.
- You have tight Achilles tendons or calf muscles.
I am convinced that my plantar fasciitis is a result from tight calves and achilles tendons due to increased physical activity. Last summer I started commuting to work and elsewhere via bicycle. Because I viewed this as a way to get from point A to point B and not a mode of exercise, I was silly and I never stretched afterwards. This led to extremely tight hip flexors, quads, hamstrings, calves, and achilles tendons. Basically, every muscle in my leg is tight and it pulls on my plantar fascia and irritates it. It is no fun at all!
I am signing off now. Below I have left some good videos on plantar fasciitis and some good ways to rid yourself of the pain. I will follow up soon with ways in which I am treating my pain and how it has worked! Cheers, mates.