Foot pain”, “heel pain”, “arch pain”, “cramping in the foot”, “pain in the morning and after sitting”, “Feels like I’ve got a stone in my shoe!”  These are some of the things our patients report when suffering with plantar fasciitis!

So what is Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation (swelling) of the plantar fascia causing pain.
  • The plantar fascia is a strong band of tissue, like an elastic band, that runs underneath the bones of the foot.
  • It’s structure is similar to tendon and ligament transmitting mechanical stress through the foot  and supporting the arch.
  • It attaches at one end to the heel bone and at the other under the toes.
  • When standing the plantar fascia enables the foot to act as truss and support the weight of the body.
Foot pain, heel pain causing inflammation

CAUSES & RISK FACTORS – The cause is due to inflammation to the plantar fascia. The stress of walking around, running, and being on the feet for long periods can strain and injure the fascia. The risk of injury or stress to this tissue can increase as we age or increase exercise intensity rapidly.Females are slightly more likely to develop symptoms. Carrying extra weight can lead to stress on the plantar fascia, this can be from external weight e.g. lifting or carrying heavy objects or bags or gaining weight over time and during pregnancy as the body adapts to weight and posture changes. Wearing unsupportive shoes can increase and cause strain to the foot joints and soft tissues either creating or aggravating the symptoms. Previous foot trauma and injury can cause adaptation that increases the risk of problems such as plantar fasciitis.


  • Initially the focus is on taking the stress off the heel. We advise a period of reduced weight bearing, avoiding running and walking on hard surfaces and being barefoot.
  • Chiropractic treatment works on the foot joints, adjusting the small bones of the foot and ankle to ensure the arch, ankle and toes are moving well. Supporting the optimum foot position and translating force through the rest of the limb effectively is also key.
  • Soft tissue massage and dry needling the plantar fascia directly can help to reduce the muscle tension and inflammation.
  • Kinesiology taping to hold the natural arch of the foot can offer support after treatments to ensure the foot maintains a better position.
  • Reducing the inflammation using ice therapy can be very effective, this can be in the form of ice bathing the foot with cold, icy water, resting the foot on ice or using a frozen bottle of water to roll the foot over.
  • Orthotics and foot wear are important to consider. The arch of the foot can reduce and drop as we get older or more demand is put on the feet. Wearing good supportive footwear can help to give the arches of the feet a stable foundation. If good foot wear alone isn’t enough orthotics can be a very effective way of giving that extra support. When considering orthotics it is important that you get the right support for you. We advise that a gait scan is carried out to give us more information on where and how much support is required. You can find out more information here
  • Long term losing weight will also decrease stress on the heel and lessen pain. Keeping moderately active and avoiding placing a lot of prolonged stress on the feet can assist and where possible carry out exercise or activity on softer surfaces for example if you run opt for a treadmill, grass and track instead of pavements and road.