In most cases, people experience Plantar Fasciitis when the arch of the foot is under supported. The condition can also occur when the muscle band of the plantar fascia is overused. People also tend to overlook the fact that going barefoot or wearing extremely flimsy shoes can be a cause of plantar fascia strain.
Let us take a look at other possible causes as well as how to find the right shoes to limit the possibility of this condition from happening.
The Source of Pain
The degree of pain in the heel area of the foot can vary significantly. Some people may experience mild pain while others can go through crippling agony. Some of the reasons that can increase the intensity of the pain are:
- Collapsed foot arches or sometimes referred to as flat feet, which causes the plantar fascia to over stretch;
- Unevenly placing your weight in the inner side of your foot (over pronation);
- Tight and weak calf muscles tend to pull the heels and stretch the plantar fascia;
- Walking barefoot;
- Health conditions like nerve problems, arthritis, and gout among others; and
- Wearing the wrong type of shoes.
Choosing the Right Shoes for Heel Pain
One of the easiest ways to address the pain associated with plantar fascia strain is to reduce the pressure exerted on your feet. This can be done by ensuring that you are using the right type of shoes for your foot structure. Since there is no shoe that would be best for everyone, here are some things to consider when buying your shoes.
- Support to the arch and heel is critical to ease any pain you are feeling in your feet. Shoes with a closed heel can reduce the pain caused by plantar fasciitis; combining this with a supportive insole that has a good arch will go a long way in decreasing the frequency of pain.
- Firm soles are better. There is a notion that flexible soles can provide better support and flexibility, however, the reality is that firm soles are better for those with plantar fasciitis because it controls the range of motion and aligns the foot with the ankle to limit overstretching.
- Adequate toe rocker should go with the firm sole. This is to make sure that enough forward movement can be achieved with every stride. Toe rockers are a must when shopping for running shoes. The toe rockers should have an upward curve to prevent plantar fascia overstretching.
- Shoes with elevated heels and rocker soles are also desirable. Heels that are at least an inch high can help to ease the pressure exerted on the heels of your feet. Make sure that the rocker sole allows the shoe to rock forward. Keep in mind that shoes with flat heels transfer most of your body weight to your heels also, resulting in increased pressure on your plantar fascia. Better cushioning should also be considered to minimise the impact absorption as your heel meets the ground.
- Slip-ons fit loosely on your foot, which means there is not enough support. Look for lace-up, or Velcro shoes at can be adjusted to give your feet additional support.
Essentially, the best shoes for those with plantar fasciitis must have closed heels, deliver strong support for your arch, and has minimal twisting or bending at the midsoles. It should also allow bending at the toe box portion only.
If you cannot find these types of shoes readily available in the market, then you may need to consult with shoe specialists for a customised fitting relative to your condition.
Basically, the right type of supportive shoes can limit the pain caused by plantar fascia strain and minimize the possibility of exaggerating the condition. Call to your nearest Foot Solutions store today, to see how we can help you to minimise the discomfort or pain associated with a strained plantar fascia.