BLOG - REGULAR BLOG BY JANET McGROGGAN - PRINCIPAL PODIATRIST 

Posts tagged “Calf Stretches”

A podiatrist is a lower limb specialist and has, you will be glad to know, a plethora or treatments in their armoury. 
 
In your first appointment, they will check if you have been wearing good footwear and had a go at stretching. 
 
They will take a history and decide if your plantar fasciitis is acute or chronic. 
 
Acute plantar fasciitis responds well to a treatment called low-dye strapping. This sports strapping supports the foot and allows you to go about your daily business and wear ordinary shoes. It lasts several days and can help reduce inflammation and get you over a ‘hump’ in your recovery. Low-dye strapping is also a good indicator of how you would respond to orthotic therapy. Sometime the strapping needs to be repeated weekly to get the best recovery. 
If footwear changes do not help your plantar fasciitis then it's time to get stretching. 
 
The plantar fascia is a ligament and ligaments are not very stretchy so we need to stretch the muscles acting on the plantar fascia and the calf muscle group are often the main culprit. 
 
Stretching the calf muscle can have a direct effect on your plantar fascia. Lunges and heel drops [standing with the balls of both feet on a step and lowering both heels down] can both help if done daily for at least a fortnight. 
 
Using a wall for support keep your front knee vertical above your ankle and stretch the back-leg’s calf muscle. Keep the heel on the floor and both feet facing forwards, the back foot usually wants to tilt outwards. There’s no need to push into the wall and don’t pulse in and out, just hold for at least 30 seconds. If you cannot feel a stretch move your back leg further away from the wall. 
 
To bring this stretch into your Soleus muscle place a rolled-up hand towel under the ball of the foot in the leg you are stretching. Again, just feel this stretch and hold for 30 seconds. 
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