One of our fav clients (we’ll call her Christine), a runner and mom of 2 came to us in a lot of
pain. She was a long distance runner in her “spare time” – she’s one of those people who
accomplishes more before 9am than most of us do all day – and had developed a common
runner’s injury: plantar fasciitis. She had been sidelined by the pain in her heels for a few weeks
and was itching to get moving again.
Plantar fasciitis doesn’t only happen to runners. Causes of plantar fasciitis are as varied as their
sufferers: from flat feet to tight calf muscles, from wearing improper fitting shoes to prolonged
standing on hard surfaces (hello Costco employees!)
Treatment options are varied as well: from rest (which could mean more periods of sitting, or
shorter running intervals), ice, calf stretches, and strengthening exercises for the small muscles
of the foot, to more intense solutions like shockwave therapy and orthotics.
Christine had been resting more than she liked for a few weeks, and the pain wasn’t lessening
so we tried shockwave therapy. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy has been shown to be very
effective in the treatment of plantar fasciitis. It uses acoustic waves generated at a high
frequency and a high pressure, using compressed air. These waves are transmitted to muscles,
tendons and ligaments through the sound head. When these waves are transmitted into the
tissues there is increased blood flow to the area that is treated which helps encourage healing.
Shockwave therapy can also break up scar tissue and adhesions. Patients will generally need
4-6 treatments with shockwave therapy.
Christine found great relief in her shockwave therapy, and, to ensure we were fully comprehensive with her treatment plan, she was given a individualized strengthening and stretching program, had Graston Technique performed on her calves, and she was also fitted for orthotics. We are happy to say she is back on her game and now when we see her, it’s at Mapleton Park on her morning run!
If you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis and are seeking treatment, the Team at Rehab One Performance Center would love to help you get back to full strength.