Is Physical Therapy Beneficial for Treating Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain.  The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue on the bottom of the foot that can become inflamed due to repetitive strain.

Risk factors for developing plantar fasciitis:

  • Tight calf muscles
  • High arch
  • Repetitive high impact activities such as running/sports
  • New or increase in current activity level
  • Increased body weight (BMI >30)
  • Wearing shoes with inadequate arch support

Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include:

  • Sharp pain at the bottom of the foot near the heel
  • Pain that is worse with the first few steps in the morning
  • Pain after prolonged standing or walking (particularly when barefoot or in unsupportive shoes)
  • Pain upon standing after a long period of sitting

Physical Therapy Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis

Our physical therapists at Lifeline Physical Therapy treat plantar fasciitis and will work with you to develop a program to decrease your symptoms.   Treatment may include:

  • Manual therapy techniques such as joint and soft tissue mobilizations are used to improve joint mechanics and decrease tissue restrictions
  • Taping 
  • An individualized exercise program to work on gait, flexibility, strength, and functional training *
  • Patient education:
    • Home exercise program 
    • Use of a night splint
    • Footwear and shoe inserts
    • Passive stretching
    • Activity modification
      • Proper warmup and gradual buildup of activity
    • Modalities
        • Ice massage/ice roller

Physical therapists are movement experts. They improve quality of life through hands-on care, patient education, and prescribed movement.  Visit one of Lifeline Physical Therapy’s eight Pittsburgh locations to start getting relief from your plantar fasciitis symptoms.

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