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Question for Walkers

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Old 08-21-2002, 07:08 AM   #1
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I have been walking for the past 6 weeks and yesterday I noticed pain in my foot. I looked up my symptoms and it is called Plantar Fasciitis. Bascially, the muscle that runs from heel to toe on the underside of the foot is inflamed. It says to take it easy on the exercise. I only walk 30-40 minutes (2 miles) a day. I really do not want to quit walking. HELP

Has anyone else experienced this? What did you do to help eleviate the pain? How long did it take to get back to your normal exercise routine?

Thanks.
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Old 08-21-2002, 04:46 PM   #2
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Plantar fasciitis is just awful. In addition to resting it and icing it, you have to stretch the foot properly, and make sure you stretch before getting out of bed in the morning or to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Sounds difficult, but it is worth making a concerted effort.

When you sleep, the muscles in your foot and ankle will shorten to take the stress off the painful area. In an attempt to heal, the irritated plantar fascia will develop adhesions. When you stand, full weight bearing stretches the fascia, tears the adhesions and starts the inflammatory process all over again. It becomes a vicious cycle.

By stretching before standing, the fascia can elongate without setting up a major inflammation. Night splints can be helpful. If this is a recurring problem, you may need to be evaluated for custom fitted orthotics (shoe inserts). Taping and strapping can help, plus will let you know if you would benefit from orthotics before you go that route.

See if your doc will give you an order for physical therapy, find a private practitioner that specializes in orthopaedics and/or sports medicine and get well so that this doesn't become a chronic problem.

Here are som examples of stretches I have found useful:

1)With knee straight, using hands or towel, pull foot and toes back towards body until a strong stretch is felt in the sole of the foot and calf. Keep ankle in neutral position (no twisting to one side or pointing/flexing the toes). Hold 20-30 seconds, do 3 reps, 3-4 times per day. MAKE SURE TO DO THIS ONE BEFORE GETTING OUT OF BED

2)Do the same stretch as above, but allow the knee to bend to 90 degrees (gives the calf an extra stretch). Same hold, reps and times per day.

With both stretches, make sure that you are pulling the toes as well as the foot back towards the body. Ideally, do both before getting out of bed, but absolutely do #1 before your toesies ever touch the floor!

To strengthen the foot again try these:

1) Place a towel on the floor longwise. With heel off the towel, use toes to pull towel towards body until you have gone the length of the towel. As this gets easier, you can add light weight to the far end of the towel. Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps daily.

2) Place a towel on the floor crosswise. With heel off the towel, use toes to pull the towel from right to left and from left to right without pivoting on the heel (make toes do the work). Do 2-3 sets of 12-15 reps daily.

With the strengthening, we are working on strengthening the foot intrinsics to add dynamic support and stability to the plantar fascia in standing and gait.

Keep the icing up!! On for 20 minutes, off 30 minutes to an hour and repeat as often as possible. You can also use a tennis ball under the sole of the foot to apply some direct pressure which will help with pain and soft tissue restrictions.

And no! I didn't write this all by myself I borrowed it from a friend who is a certified Physical Therapist. If you need any further explanation of any of these just ask.

Most importantly though stay off it and see your GP to prevent it getting any worse.

Stef
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Old 09-12-2002, 04:09 PM   #3
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Default OUCH!

I hope your foot is feeling better. Those walking/running injuries can really give you a world of hurt!! I'd like to recommend resting the food for a few days. You may cause more damage by working it too much. Maybe you could soak them in hot water to relax the muscle. I agree with 40livin', ice may help too!!

By the way, I think I'd make this an excuse to ask my husband for a foot rub. hehe

Feel better!!
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Old 09-12-2002, 04:10 PM   #4
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OOPS!! I wrote FOOD instead of FOOT. I meant, rest your foot...
.. Can you tell what I'm thinking about? ARRRG!!
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Old 10-01-2002, 10:41 AM   #5
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hehehe HappyHousewife I am glad I'm not the only one that has food on her mind. I've done that before.

The only pain I get with my foot is cramps, right in the middle. I can't even straighten my foot!
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Old 10-01-2002, 11:33 AM   #6
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My sister-in-law gets those. OUCH! I she says it hurts really bad. I think she uses that Bio-Freeze stuff on her's. I get a cramp kinda like that.. but it's on the inside of my foot. Where that muscle is.. it starts hurting really bad after I've been walking for a while. ..The joys of being a women, eh?
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