What Is Plantar Fasciitis? | Symptoms, Causes, and Stretches Explained

PowerStep Blog: Plantar Fasciitis: Symptoms, Causes, and Stretches

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of the band of fibrous tissue, called the plantar fascia, located on the bottom of your foot. This condition causes heel and arch pain, as well as problems with walking. It occurs when the plantar fascia, which runs along the bottom of your foot, becomes overloaded or overstretched, creating microtears. This can happen due to a sudden increase in activities, such as running, dancing, or standing for long periods. Plantar fasciitis is usually treated with a combination of rest, ice, and stretching exercises.  

This blog will discuss plantar fasciitis symptoms, non-surgical treatment options, and how to prevent the condition with simple stretches and wearing plantar fasciitis inserts in your shoes.

Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a supporting ligament in the bottom of your foot. It connects the heel to the base of the toes and supports the foot's arch, helping stabilize the foot in every step you take. Plantar fasciitis is a very painful condition. It is common in the following populations: 

  • Marathon runners 
  • People who jog or run daily 
  • People having an abnormal gait (manner of walking) 
  • People who are overweight 
  • People who stand for long periods like teachers or retail workers 
  • People who often wear high heels 

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It can occur in one foot or present simultaneously in both feet. The pain can be described as a stabbing pain at the sole. The most common plantar fasciitis symptoms are: 

  • Heel pain radiating from the heel and running along the bottom of the foot 
  • Pain during the first steps in the morning, or after periods of rest or inactivity 

The pain might subside during activity or exercise, but usually returns afterward when the person rests.

Plantar Fasciitis Stretches & Exercises

Plantar fasciitis can make even the simplest daily activities feel like a struggle. Performing daily foot stretches and wearing orthotic insoles can help get rid of plantar fasciitis, so you can get back to living your life.

Along with the help of a foot stretching device, here are three plantar fasciitis exercises that physical and occupational therapists recommend:

  1. The Towel Stretch: Place a towel around the ball of your foot and pull it towards you while keeping your knee straight. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and repeat three times.
  2. The Calf Stretch: Place your hands on a wall and step back with one leg, keeping the heel of your back foot flat on the ground. Lean into the wall, front knee bending, until you feel a stretch in your calf. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat three times on each leg.
  3. The Plantar Fasciitis Stretch: Sit in a chair with your legs extended in front of you. Place a rolled-up towel under the arch of one foot and slowly flex your toes towards your shin. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds and repeat three times.

Apart from these stretches, using orthotic insoles in your everyday shoes can help treat and even prevent plantar fasciitis. PowerStep® Pinnacle® insoles are the #1 podiatrist recommended insole for plantar fasciitis. Their signature arch shape, deep heel cup and premium cushioning give you the support your feet need to keep your soles from getting inflamed.

The best insoles for plantar fasciitis have the following characteristics:

  1. Simi-rigid arch support
  2. Shock absorbing cushioning, such as a premium foam
  3. Appropriately aligned heel cushion
  4. Fit your shoe correctly

    Woman placing plantar fasciitis shoe inserts into white shoe

    PowerStep Orthotics for Plantar Fasciitis

    When you’re looking for relief from foot pain from plantar fasciitis, podiatrists trust PowerStep orthotic insoles to provide the necessary comfort and support. From insoles for your everyday shoes to insoles for work boots and running shoe inserts, PowerStep offers a wide selection of orthotics to help you live your life free of foot pain.


    1. https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/plantar-fasciitis-stretches#stretching