Plantar Fasciitis, heel pain, is one of the most common conditions affecting millions each year. According to a study, about 83% of active adults, ages 25 to 65, will experience Planta Fasciitis and 10% of runners will suffer from it.
Plantar fasciitis affects the ability to stand, move, and weight-bearing exercise and negatively impacts the quality of life often affecting the ability to work, carry out daily activities, and exercise. With early diagnosis and early application of nonsurgical treatments, symptoms can be resolved with time.
Plantar Fasciitis (PF) or Painful Heel Syndrome is a medical disorder with inflammation of the plantar fascia caused by tension overload on the flat, broad tendons found between your heel and the ball of your foot attachment on the big bone in the heel. This typically generates pain in the heel, especially in the morning and during weight-bearing exercises. People suffering from Plantar Fasciitis said that the most frequent symptom is pain and stiffness in the bottom of the heel. For most people, the pain level varies from day to day.
Who's most likely to suffer from Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is observed in both men and women. However, it most frequently involves active men ages 40 - 70. A person is likely to get plantar fasciitis if they:
• Have foot arch problems such as having flat feet and high arches
• Run long distances, downhill, or uneven surfaces
• Is obese or has suddenly gained weight
• Are wearing shoes which have poor arch support or soft soles that do not support the foot
Doctors and Podiatrists can normally diagnose plantar fasciitis by talking to the patient and simply examining the feet. In rare cases, tests are needed if the diagnosis is not certain or to exclude other causes of heel pain.
The most common and frequent symptom of Plantar Fasciitis is pain and stiffness in the bottom of the heel. Pain can occur anywhere on the underside of the heel near the arch. Frequently, one spot is found as the main cause of pain. This spot is on average about 4 cm forward from the heel and is usually painful to touch.
Many people suffering from Plantar Fasciitis say that they have at least many, if not all, of these symptoms:
• Sharp heel pain
• Heel tenderness
• Foot tingling or burning
• A swollen heel
• Pain that continues for months
• A tight Achilles tendon
• Pain after prolonged rest. The pain is frequently worst when the person takes the first steps on getting up in the morning
• Pain after prolonged activity
• Pain when flexing the foot
• Increased anxiety
Plantar Fasciitis can be the result of:
• physical activity (Too much or lack thereof)
• occupation impact on the feet
• foot structure
• spending a lot of time on your feet
• wearing shoes with poor arch support or stiff soles
• having tight calf muscles
• being flat-footed or having high arches
A recent study on the effect of Rehabilitation Program Exercise and Hydrotherapy on Foot plantar fasciitis some participants saw an improvement in pain associated with plantar fasciitis.
Overall foot pain: The pain of a person suffering from plantar fasciitis can range from a simple dull ache to a burning or sharp pain, that may sometimes result to simple bothersome pain or complete immobility for the day. The buoyancy of water supports weak muscles of the arch of the foot, making it easier to balance and hold overall good posture. When you're in the water, your foot will be more relaxed and will make continual small adjustments to the ever-changing dynamic environment.
Stiffness: Many suffering from plantar fasciitis report stiffness. As is typical of other pain-bearing diseases, the stiffness is usually worse in the morning and may improve as the day progresses. Working out in the water is a great form of therapy as it allows the muscles to relax and release stiffness. Contrasting hydrotherapy or the use of alternating water temperatures from hot and ice-cold forces the tissue in the foot to adapt to the sudden temperature changes. It is a gentle tissue workout, stimulation without stress, and strong sensations without active movement.
Tender points:Tender points are areas of tenderness in the muscular and tendinous tissue in the body. For those suffering from plantar fasciitis, tenderness is typically found in the arches to the whole of the foot. With the water physically surrounding and supporting you, preventing stress on these tender points will help you move easily, and you will be more confident in moving in the water.
Increased anxiety: Plantar Fasciitis patients have reported that they have increased anxiety as the pain they experience becomes expected every day. For most, the pain felt by people suffering from plantar fasciitis when they are anxious serves more as a disability than a simple pain as it can substantially impact the quality of life. Working out in the water activates helps in releasing oxytocin which are hormones that reduce anxiety.
Worsening of pain after physical activity: Working out in the water helps avoid the pain after physical activity. The low-impact but high-intensity workout in the water is a great substitute for those who suffer from Fibromyalgia and are suffering from pain after inland physical activities.
A Hydrorider is a great piece of equipment that can help relieve the symptoms of plantar fasciitis and enables exercise with minimal pain as it:
• Enables a impact free movement and exercise
• Enables athletes and over exercises to work out an insiveie lete to maintain condition without pain or aggravating the condition.
• Increases the dynamic range of foot arch and ankle joint in while extension, flexion, inversion, and eversion
• Reduces stiffness
• Helps in avoiding the worsening pain after working out
• Relieves the swelling of the body especially the foot
• Gives over exercises an outlet that is impact-free on the foot and does not increase pressure or pain
• The use of alternating water temperatures from hot and cold is a gentle tissue workout, stimulation without stress, and strong sensations without active movement.
• Addresses bouts of anxiety
• The soothing effect of the water helps in reducing the sharp pain experienced by people suffering from plantar fasciitis.
An underwater treadmill is a great piece of aquatic equipment that helps alleviate symptoms of Plantar fasciitis and enables exercise with minimal pain as it:
• Allows walking and improves mobility without impact or pain
• Helps in avoiding after workout pain
• the soothing effect of the water may also reduce the perception of pain, helping lower anxiety
• Improve mobility
• Enhances blood flow that reduces swelling
Note: Please seek medical advice before exercising & always train under the advice your medical specialist.