A common condition incurred by athletes, especially long-distance runners, plantar fasciitis is an overuse injury that occurs when the thick tissue on the bottom of the foot becomes inflamed. The result: pain, discomfort, difficulty walking and a general sense of ouch!
While the tender, achy feeling can develop over time, someone who realizes that they have plantar fasciitis may be looking for quick relief. We turn to Zeel Experts from around the country for practical tips to relieve this pesky, painful condition.
Manage it with massage. "The inflammation in the plantar fascia can be the result of any of the muscles that have tendons or connective tissue running into the bottom of the foot," explains Aurora, Ill.-based massage therapist Fardeen Arif. "Ideally, you would massage all the muscles of the lower leg, along with the retinaculum of the leg and foot. Pressure should be firm, gradually going to deep and finishing light."
DIY foot-work. Tammy Jones, a California State certified massage therapist, suggests these do-it-yourself options for plantar fasciitis pain relief. First, try freezing a 16 or 20-ounce water bottle and roll it under the affected area. Another option: stretch the foot against the wall, keeping the foot flush to the wall and your heel on the ground.
Ease it with Eastern therapies. "Acupuncture with tui na, then follow by stretching and strengthening," suggests Ta-Li Chang, a licensed acupuncturist and tui na practitioner in La Habra, Calif. For those of you who have never heard of it, tui na is a hands-on form of Eastern bodywork that unlocks the body's energy.
Disclaimer: If you think you have plantar fasciitis or any other physical injury, be sure to check with a medical physician before beginning any treatment program.