Treating And Preventing Plantar Fasciitis

  • By Dr. Jordan Metzl
  • Published Aug 14, 2013
  • Updated Aug 14, 2013 at 6:30 PM UTC

Prevent It

Stay flexible. The best way to stretch this area is to put your toes and the ball of your foot against the top of the vertical edge of a step with your heel on the floor and slowly lean forward, keeping your leg straight, until you feel the stretch at the top of your calf. Repeat the stretch with your knee bent, feeling the stretch farther down the leg near the Achilles tendon. Hold each stretch for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat several times in each position. Ideally, you’ll do this daily, before and after exercise.

Roll it. Roll a tennis or golf ball back and forth under each foot for a few minutes a day to loosen the fascia.

Try orthotics. Over-the-counter (OTC) hard arch supports can be helpful, especially for you high-arched folks. Prescription orthotics are another option because they’re custom-made for your foot, but I suggest trying the (much cheaper) OTC orthotics first because in my practice, about 90 percent of patients have good results with them. If they don’t work, then see a podiatrist for a custom set.

RELATED: What To Do When You Can’t Run

When To Call A Doctor

If symptoms don’t improve in about 2 weeks, make an appointment.

New York City sports medicine specialist Jordan D. Metzl, M.D. is a 29-time marathon finisher and 10-time Ironman. His book, The Athlete’s Book of Home Remedies, has more than 1,000 tips to fix all types of injuries and medical conditions.

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