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10 Basic Exercises to Help You Treat Plantar Fasciitis

10 Basic Exercises to Help You Treat Plantar Fasciitis

There are many causes for plantar fasciitis, including weak foot muscles, extra pressure due to obesity, incorrect footwear, or even stress from exercise, particularly running. Because of these different factors that can cause this pain, it is a difficult to find a cure. But there are many exercises that can relieve it and help to strengthen the muscles and tissues.

For those suffering from plantar fasciitis, these simple exercises will help to stretch and strengthen the damaged tissue, relieve the pain, and speed up the recovery process.

1. Plantar fascia stretch

Hold the heel of the foot in one hand and gently bend the toes up, hold, and then bend them down, holding again. Repeat this exercise a few times to stretch the plantar fascia, and the Achilles tendon.

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2. Standing calf stretch

Using a chair or wall for support, place the pained foot flat on the floor behind the body, with the knee straight. Put the other foot forward, slightly bent at the ankle and knee, so the body is leaning forward. Stretch the back ankle and calf for a few seconds, and then repeat on the other side.

3. Thera-band toe flexion

This exercise is very common among those suffering from plantar fasciitis. With leg stretched out straight in front, cover the sole of the foot with the band so one end is over the toes and the other comes out behind the heel. Hold the band firmly with the hands and slowly curl the toes downward against the band. Hold this position, and then ease the toes back up.

4. Sitting thera-band foot raises

Sitting in a chair with knees bent, place one end of the band around the foot of the ankle to be exercised. Run the band beneath the other foot and up the leg to the knee to be held in the hand. Lift the wrapped foot up, hold it in this position, and slowly lower it.

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5. Sitting thera-band ankle eversion

The band should be held the same as in the Thera-Band Foot Raises, but this time, instead of raising the foot, push it outward, away from the other foot, hold, and slowly bring it back in. Be sure to keep the knee straight and only rotate the ankle.

6. Sitting thera-band ankle plantarflexion

Sitting in a chair, stretch the leg with the ankle to be exercised out in front. Wrap the band around the foot, and hold the ends tightly with the hands at the waist. Push the foot down towards the floor and hold it, then slowly ease it back up.

7. Great toe stretch

Put the big toe of the pained foot on a foot roller. With the rest of the foot on the ground, apply pressure to the foot roller with the foot. The stretch should be felt in the bottom of the foot. Hold this for 15 seconds and then release.

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8. Plantar massage

With a foot roller beneath the bare foot, use a bit of pressure to slowly it from the heel to the ball of the foot and back. Continue this motion for about 5 minutes.

9. Toe pick-up

Place a small round hand exerciser on the ground. Pick it up with bare toes and put it back down again. Repeat this exercise a few times, starting with a beginner hand exerciser, and progressing with a firmer one as the foot is strengthened.

10. Strengthening toe flexion

With a hand exerciser on the ground, gently curl it with bare toes, squeezing and then releasing. Use the beginner hand exerciser, and progress to the firmer ones as the foot is strengthened.

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Any of these exercises performed a few times each day will help to relieve strain and strengthened the muscles of the foot to rid it of the plantar fasciitis. But be sure to discuss any treatment with a doctor first, to decide the best ones for any individual case, and how many repetitions should be used to begin, to ensure that there is no additional strain. This will ensure the problem will be solved, and perhaps help to keep it from recurring in the future.

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Sasha Brown

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Last Updated on May 21, 2020

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

You have probably seen enough fad diets to last a lifetime. Many have become popular overnight and left just as quickly.

Some fad diets, though, have actually passed the test of time and are making some headway in the nutritional world.

Outlined below are four fad diets that are actually beneficial for your health and wellness. Read on to find out why you should consider adopting one (or more) of these healthy eating styles today.

An important concept you should keep in mind is to disregard the term “diet” as it is typically used. The word diet implies the idea of restriction and removal. Instead, think of the word diet in this context as a healthy eating lifestyle.

Let’s take a look at some of these healthy eating lifestyles that have been categorized, by no fault of their own, as fad diets.

1. The Paleo Diet

The paleo diet, or ancestral eating, is simply eating the way your paleolithic ancestors would have up to 10,000 years ago, or when the agriculture age began.

The advantage now is you don’t have to do this in a loin cloth, unless you want to… The focus of this diet is proteins, vegetables, some fruits, nuts and seeds and some healthy fats.

In the paleo diet, there aren’t any grains, starchy carbohydrates, sugars, or dairy.

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How Your Health Can Change With Paleo

The paleo diet is a good way to keep your blood sugar under control. It can also have a positive effect on type 2 diabetes, and can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

With this healthy eating lifestyle, people have also achieved good weight loss results and boast improved energy levels. [1]

It’s not just what’s in the paleo diet that’s important, it’s what’s NOT in it. There aren’t any processed and manufactured foods, junk foods, artificial ingredients or chemical additives.

Paleo is a way of eating that gets you more in tune with your body and, therefore, can provide a lot of benefits.

2. Whole30

The Whole30 diet is relatively new and owes its popularity to social media and the #Whole30 Instagram hashtag that allowed people to share and broadcast their success with the diet.

With Whole30 you are taking 30 days and focusing on nutritious whole foods such as meats, nuts and seeds, seafood, eggs, vegetables, and fruits.

During the month you are eliminating:

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  • sugar
  • alcohol
  • legumes
  • grains
  • dairy
  • soy

Whole30 is similar to paleo, but it goes a bit further eliminating sweeteners such as honey or maple syrup.

At the end of the 30 days, you strategically reintroduce those eliminated foods back into your diet to discover any possibility of health consequences from them or even potential food allergies.

Finding Out How Food Impacts You

Most people eat the same things so often and may not realize that certain foods are causing health consequences, as they’ve become accustomed to feeling lethargic and run down.

With Whole30 you get the chance to see how these foods may have a negative impact on your body. You’ll also reset your taste buds, which may have become desensitized from processed and artificial “foods” and excess salt.

This diet will help you regain your love of food… in a healthy way!

3. The Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean diet has been at the top of the list as a very effective diet for some time now.

For people in countries like Italy or Greece, this has simply been a normal way of life–along with higher activity levels, sunlight exposure, proximity to water, and lower stress.

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With the Mediterranean diet, the focus is on heart-healthy foods. It looks like this:

  • Fruits & vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Legumes & nuts
  • Replacing butter with olive oil
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Moderate amounts of red wine

Help Your Heart & Overall Health With A Mediterranean Diet

Information from the Mayo Clinic shows that this diet reduces heart disease and lowers your “bad” LDL cholesterol. Studies involving 1.5 million people demonstrated that the Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular mortality, along with overall mortality. [2]

With all these benefits, this is definitely a “fad diet” that’s worth the hype.

4. The Alkaline Diet

The alkaline diet is about changing the foods you eat so that you put your body into an alkaline state and out of an acidic state. When your body is too far on the acidic side it can result in a condition called acidosis. This can lead to issues in your body such as upset stomach, breathing difficulties, headaches, weakness and, fatigue. In extreme cases, it can result in shock, coma, or death.

The goal is to get your body in a more alkaline state, which results in overall better health. The focus is on including alkaline boosting foods such as fruits, nuts, vegetables, and legumes. You’re also wanting to reduce acidic foods such as low quality beef and poultry, dairy, eggs, grains, and alcohol.

Pros & Cons With The Alkaline Diet

The benefits that come from this way of eating is that reduction in inferior quality foods, processed items and alcohol. You may feel improved energy levels, mental clarity and even better joint health.

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People also report weight loss but again this may come from the reduction in calories from junk and processed foods but this is not a bad thing at all.

One con with this diet is that the pH value of the food you eat might not have an impact on blood pH, as your body is able to balance this pretty well on a day-to-day basis.

Follow These Fads for Better Health and Wellness

There can be a danger in categorizing things as a fad diet because fads come and go. People are always looking for the next big thing or a quick fix.

The four examples above buck that status quo. These diets, though mainstream, actually can give you benefits and aren’t going to go away anytime soon because they work.

What makes these diets special is that they boast real whole foods and the eliminate processed and manufactured junk.

The Big Takeaway:

Whatever way you choose to eat, the focus needs to be on whole unprocessed foods. Look for the cleanest, local and most natural things you can find for the benefit of your overall health and wellness. Your body and mind will thank you.

Featured photo credit: Dan Gold via unsplash.com

Reference

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