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Can Massage help Plantar Fasciitis?

PLANTAR FASCIITIS - Massage as an Option of Treatment


What is it? Plantar Fasciitis is a form of tendinitis (an inflammation of the tendons that attaches a muscle to a bone) that involves the thick band of connective tissue on the bottom of the foot.

Symptoms People with the condition present with swelling and severe pain in the foot and heel with activity. It is especially worst first thing in the morning or after being seated for long periods of time.


Prolonged weight bearing and overuse Ill fitting shoes Standing for long periods of time on hard surfaces It affects those with weight problems Athletes - tight calvesIt most often impacts women in their forties. Treatment

arch supports customised by a podiatristStrength/stretch exercises from a physiotherapistpossible if more severe special night time socksDon't walk barefoot - have supportive shoes on as often as you canuse a small bottle with water that has been frozen and roll it under you feet as pain/inflammation relief or there are customised hand/foot rollers

Can Massage Help? When treating someone with Plantar Fasciitis, we don't just treat the sole of the feet! If you think about it, the Plantar Fascia attach on the the Calcaneus (heel) you will note there is another rather large tendon travelling from the heel up to several muscles of the lower leg.....You guessed it your Achilles Tendon. Think how strong those muscles that make up your calf are gastrocnemius and soleus. So we have had success in treating this condition by including a massage of those muscles and surrounding fascia as well.

The Techniques We would include the following:

Swedish massage warm upMyofascial release in calves and plantar surface of feetDeep tissue of calves and releasing any trigger pointsSpecific Rehabilitation massage of plantar fascia and calves incorporating movement of the footPNF or stretching of foot and calf

We would potentially also Rocktape the feet and calves and suggest clients do some stretching exercises.

Like any condition, Plantar Fasciitis can range from being quite mild to very severe, some clients may need to see a specialist re also looking at potential bones spurs and surgical options. Hopefully if not too extreme, Remedial Massage can certainly help.

Remember with any inflammatory complaint it will take time. Several treatments may be necessary. It depends on the individual. But we certainly believe massage can help to speed up the recovery time.


Memmler's The Human Body in Health and Disease, 13th ed Barbara Janson Cohen, Kerr L. Hull Pub Wolters Kluwer

A Massage Therapist's Guide to Pathology 4th ed Ruth Werner. Pub Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

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