Hopefully you don’t need an excuse to go outside and enjoy the world around you, but if you do, use Go for a Ride Day as a reason to get out and about. November 22 is a day designated to encourage everyone to go out and enjoy a bike ride to anywhere. Riding around is a good way to be active without straining your heel, too. Painful heels can put a damper on many fun activities, but exercises for heel pain may help you alleviate the discomfort.
Many different conditions can cause heel pain, including plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. These particular culprits involve connective tissues that are too tight pulling on the heel bone and causing pain. Stretching and exercising these tight tissues can help loosen them, relieving some of the discomfort. Here are a few common exercises for heel pain that can help alleviate some symptoms:
Calf Stretch – Stand with your palms flat on a wall at chest level. Set one foot back several inches and keep that knee locked straight. Bend your front knee so you lung toward the wall without lifting your heels. Hold the stretch for ten seconds, then relax. Repeat the exercise with both front and back knees bent.
Towel Stretch – Sit with your feet straight in front of you. Loop a towel around the ball of one foot. Pull back on the ends of the towel so your foot flexes. Hold it for ten seconds, then relax and repeat.
Water Bottle Exercise – Take a cold or frozen water bottle and set it on the floor. Roll it back and forth under your sole, pressing down gently to massage the bottom of your foot.
Item Pick-Ups – Lay out small items in front of you, like marbles, pencils, or pebbles. Using just your toes, pick them up one-by-one and put them in a bowl beside you.
Each of these exercises helps loosen tight tissues and condition your feet to function properly. Used along with other conservative treatments for heel pain, these can significantly reduce your discomfort. If you’re not sure how to perform these exercises, or you’d like other help with your uncomfortable heels, contact Martin Foot and Ankle for an appointment. You can reach our offices in Hanover, Lancaster, Lititz and York by calling (717) 757-3537 or using the web request page.
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