“Out of adversity comes opportunity”
– Benjamin Franklin
The world has been hit with a catastrophic pandemic that we know as Covid-19 (coronavirus).
- People are getting sick
- People are dying
- People are losing their jobs
- People are losing their businesses
- People are struggling to pay their bills
These are frightening times and the world seems full of adversity…..
Now, your plantar fasciitis may be the last thing on your mind with everything that is going on in your life at the moment, but this may well be the opportunity you need to really take control of healing yourself of the condition.
With much of the world now on lockdown, people are being forced to stay in their homes for weeks, and possibly months.
It is our hope, that for the majority of people this time will merely be a social distancing precautionary measure, and you won’t actually have to deal with fighting off the Covid-19 virus.
However, it may also be the only opportunity that you have to stay home and follow some kind of routine that could really benefit your plantar fasciitis condition.
What is it the experts are telling everyone?
“STAY HOME – Sit on the sofa and watch Netflix until your isolation period is over!”
Believe it or not, this advice really will benefit you as a plantar fasciitis sufferer, and you could come out of this being healed of your condition.
We are not trivialising the seriouness of Covid-19!
Please do not look at this post as though we are trivialising the seriousness of Covid-19 and the devastating effect it is having around the world.
That is not our intention, or the point we are trying to get across.
What we are hoping you take away from this post, is that there is a possibility here for those people who are not actively battling with the virus within their personal household, to perhaps use this enforced lockdown as an opportunity to get control of their plantar fasciitis.
One of the main reasons we hear from people who do not follow a daily healing routine, is that thier job keeps them on their feet all day, and they do not have the time to do what is required.
This enforced time that you will be spending at home should allow you that time, and may be your only opportunity away from the workplace, to rest up and take the steps necessary to get better.
Imagine going back to work when your isolation period is over and NOT having the pain of plantar fasciitis to deal with.
Surely that would be one good thing to come out of this truly frightening and worrying time!
Well let’s look at a few simple routines that you can put into place to help make that happen.
Here is a video summary of this article
Here are the TWO most important things you can do to help heal your Plantar Fasciitis
As mentioned earlier, without the need to go to work, you should use this opportunity to rest and put your feet up as often as possible.
Rest is the most beneficial thing you can do to help heal your plantar fasciitis.
Every time you rest for 30 minutes or more, your damaged plantar fascia tissue begins to heal itself.
Resting allows the streched plantar fascia tissue to relax and contract. This means that the areas of tissue that is torn, begin to heal and close up.
Your body is being given the chance to heal itself, and all you have to do is sit there and watch a movie or read a book. It truly is an easy and miraculous thing.
The longer you can spend resting and keeping the weight off of your feet, the more natural healing the body can do.
If resting is the most beneficial thing you can do to heal your plantar fasciitis, then gentle foot stretching is the most important thing you can do to help with your recovery.
After you have rested for 30 minutes or more, healing will have begun on the plantar fascia. It is vitally important that you now do some gentle foot stretching exercises to ensure that you don’t re-damage the partially healed tissue.
Whilst you were sat resting, the plantar fascia will have relaxed and contracted. It is in this relaxed state that the plantar fascia can heal itself. Basically, the minute tears or rips in the plantar fascia will begin to close up and heal.
If you stand up and apply your weight without doing any gentle stretching exercises, the plantar fascia will be abruptly stretched tight, and will tear open those partially healed rips in the tissue. That is the intense pain that you have been feeling every time you stand up in the morning.
Let me try to explain that a different way….
We have all had a cut in a difficult place on our finger, usually the knuckle.
You are aware of the cut and so consciously try your best not to bend the finger so that it can heal.
Over time the cut begins to close.
However, how many of you have momentarily forgot to keep your finger straight and bent the knuckle, only to split open the cut that had begun to heal?
However, if you gently start bending your finger a little bit at a time, you find that you can eventually bend it without it splitting the cut open again.
Well the same thing is happening to your plantar fascia.
Applying your weight to your foot without first stretching, is having the same effect as bending your knuckle and splitting open your cut.
You MUST make sure that you gently stretch the plantar fascia so that you can apply your weight to the foot without splitting open all the partially healed tears.
It really is as simple as that.
If you do these two things during your period of isolation, then you will be giving your plantar fascia the best possible chance of healing itself and thus being free of your plantar fasciitis condition.
Now let’s take a look at some simple stretching exercises
Gentle Foot Stretching Exercises
OK, so now that you are aware of the two things that will benefit your recovery the most, let us look at the kind of simple exercises you should be doing.
If you have rested for 30 minutes or longer, then you must be sure to do some or all of these simple exercises, BEFORE you stand and apply weight to your foot.
So just to be clear, all of these exercises are done in the seated position, prior to you standing up after resting.
PLEASE DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP!!
It only takes you standing up one time without stretching to undo all the healing that has taken place.
- While seated, lift your damaged foot onto your opposite knee
- Grasp the padded area just below the toes with your hand
- Use the other hand to grasp your heel or the chair for stability
- Gently pull the toes backwards towards the shin to stretch the base of the foot
- Stop pulling when you feel a stretch in the arch of the foot
- Hold the position for 10 seconds and then slowly release the pressure
- Repeat 5 times
- Drop a hankerchief or flannel on the floor in front of you
- Whilst seated, grip the edges of the chair for stability
- Use your toes to pick up the tissue and hold it just above the floor for 10 seconds
- Drop the object and repeat 5 times
- Place a towel around the padded area below the toes of your affected foot
- Keep your legs straight and hold each end of the towel in your hands
- Gently pull the towel towards you to stretch the foot
- Stop pulling when you feel a stretch in the arch
- Hold for 10 seconds and gently release the pressure
- Repeat 5 times
Water Bottle Massage
- Place a full water bottle on to the floor – A frozen bottle is better*
- Apply gentle pressure and roll your foot across the bottle so that it runs backwards and forwards across the base of the foot.
- Do this for 3 – 5 minutes.
* Wearing a sock will prevent cold burn from a frozen bottle
Need A Little Help?
We are aware that some people may not be able to perform the exercises listed above.
Back pain, mobility issues, weight, body strength can all make movement difficult and exercising impossible.
Thankfully there are a couple of useful devices available to help you with this problem.
By keeping one of these devices beside you when you rest, you can use it for a few minutes before you stand and will easily remove the danger of re-damaging your plantar fascia tissue.
Good Luck & Stay Safe
Hopefully you have seen how you can turn a negative situation into a positive one.
I hope you are able to use the methods described within this post to help alleviate you of your plantar fasciitis, or at least dramatically reduce your suffering.
None of us know how the Covid-19 virus is going to impact our lives going forward, but please be safe out there, and follow all the guidelines being presented by the health specialists and experts.
Take Care and Be Safe.