The planter fascia is a long strip of connective tissue that runs from the base of the heel bone under the sole of the foot all the way to the metatarsal heads which are located at the start of each toe. Plantar fascitis is an overuse injury due to repetitive strain of the musculotendinous junction and fascia. If this strain persists over a long period of time it can result in a bone spur developing.
· Pain under foot either at the heel or middle of the arch
· Pain when touching the muscles of the arch
· Tenderness under the heel bone
· Increased stiffness in the calf
· Pain for the first few steps in the morning, or after sitting
· Difficulty when walking or weight bearing on the front of the foot
· Reduced dorsiflection of the ankle (flexing the ankle up)
Plantar fasciitis generally occurs due to an overpronated foot which increases the strain on the muscles and fascia on the base of the foot. This overpronation is associated with a weakness in the muscles in the back of the calf and places increasing on the heel bone. Orthotic insoles help by supporting the arch, and improving the foots posture and functioning.
Depending on the degree of foot pronation, over-the-counter or custom made orthotic insoles may be beneficial. In a mildly pronated foot over-the-counter orthotics may be more suitable, however in moderate to severe overpronation a more supportive and custom made orthotic should be required.