Plantar Fasciitis Or Pain In Sole Of Foot – Tips from our Physiotherapist

Posted on |

Plantar Fasciitis Or Pain In Sole Of Foot – Tips from our Physiotherapist

Plantar fasciitis is felt as a pain around the heel and arch of the foot. It can be felt as a discomfort or sharp pain in the heelon weight bearing especially after a rest period. As a person gets older, the fascia becomes less elastic. The heel pad becomes thinner and loses the capacity to absorb as much shock. There may be some swelling, small tears or bruises in the plantar fascia with the pounding force on the heel. Plantar fasciitis can also be a result of overuse in activities such as long-distance running, basketball, ballet dancing or dance aerobics. It settles down quickly if treated early and given enough rest, but may become worse and  chronic if initial symptoms are ignored.

  • Give adequate rest to your feet. Avoid prolonged standing or high impact activities like running that cause repeated loading on the foot. If you need to stand for long time, then shift your weight from one foot to the other or use a footrest under the affected foot to offload it for a while.
  • Don’t walk barefoot,especially on hard surfaces, as this puts extra stress on the plantar fascia. It is advisable to wear soft heeled footwear or footwear with scooped out heels to avoid pressure on the heel.
  • Wear supportive shoes.Choose shoes with a low to moderate heel, supportive arches and good shock absorbency.
  • Avoid high heels especially when you need to walk long distances or stand for long periods of time. High heel shoes exert additional pressure on the inflamed fascia and lead to more heel pain.
  • Do not wear worn-out shoes.Replace old, tattered, non-supportive shoes. This is very important if you walk or run in these shoes. A good way to tell that your shoes need replacing is to look for thinned (worn) out areas on the sole of the shoe.
  • Apply ice: This can be done on the painful area three or four times a day, especially at the end of the day. Icing helps to reduce pain and inflammation. Icing can also be done with a frozen bottle of water rolled under the foot while sitting.
  • Massage: Self massage can be done by rolling a tennis ball under your foot while sitting. As mentioned above, a frozen water bottle can also be used.


  • Change your sport.Try a low-impact sport such as swimming or bicycling instead of walking or jogging while the plantar fascia is inflamed/painful.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. If you are overweight, then try to lose some weight. Extra weight can put extra stress on your plantar fascia.
  • Exercise before getting out of bed in the morning or after prolonged sitting(sit to stand): Plantar fasciitis pain is usually at its worst in these two situations. A good way to combat this is to perform circular movements at the ankle (clockwise and anticlockwise) and a few seated calf stretches before weight bearing on the feet.
  • Do your stretches.Simple home exercises can be done for plantar fasciitis. Perform this stretch when waking up, mid-day, and before bed. It is also very important to perform these stretches in the warm up and cool down phase of your exercise routine, even after you recover from plantar fasciitis pain. This will help to prevent any recurrences. 

  1. Standing calf (gastrocnemius) muscle stretch:

  • Stand on the edge of a step (stairs) or stable stool
  • Lower one heel over the edge of the step
  • You should feel the stretch on the calf muscle.
  • Hold stretch for between 12-15 seconds, 3-5 repetitions each side.


2. Seated calf stretch:

  • Sit with your legs extended out in front of you and then bring your foot in towards you from the ankle at about 90 degrees.
  • You can get an additional stretch by using a towel or yoga belt and placing it around the ball of the foot.
  • You can either stretch one calf at a time or both together.

  3. Soleus Stretch:

  • To stretch place the leg to be stretched behind and lean against a wall, keeping the heel down
  • A stretch should be felt lower down near the ankle at the back of the leg
  • Hold for 12-15 seconds, 3-5 repetitions each side.

  4. Stretching the deep foot flexors

  • In sitting position, gently hold foot with one hand
  • With the opposite hand pull all five toes up towards the body
  • Hold for 12-15 seconds, 3-5 repetitions each side.

5. Towel lifts

  • This is to strengthen the deeper muscles of the foot (intrinsic muscles)
  • Place a hand towel on the floor. The towel should be completely flat
  • Stand with your foot over the towel and use your toes and the bottom of your foot to scrunch up the towel
  • Next use your toes and feet to flatten the towel
  • Repeat 10 times, 2-3 times daily 

These are some of the ways in which plantar fasciitis can be managed. You can consult one of our Singapore Physiotherapist if you continue to suffer from heel painor if you need assistance with the exercises to take care of your heel pain. Call us for an appointment or send your queries to:


Radial shock wave is a non-invasive treatment helps with Pain Relief, increasing metabolism, increasing the circulation and restoring a normalized muscle tone. It is very effective on tissues/ muscles with trigger point and/or increased tension.

A glimpse of how it is done


Shock wave therapy for knots on upper trapezius

How are shockwaves generated?

Shockwaves are generated from a projectile mechanically hitting a transmitter, which in turn produces a series of low energy acoustic (sound) waves. These waves are applied to the skin via a gel medium. The waves then travel downwards into the deeper tissues, providing effective fast pain relief.

How do shockwaves help?

Shockwaves accelerates the healing process by activating the body’s healing mechanism. They stimulate the metabolism and enhance the blood circulation. This in turn helps the damaged tissue to heal and gradually regenerate.

What happens during and after a shockwave procedure?

During the session, patients can feel a strong tapping sensation with each shock wave but the treatment only lasts a few minutes. Patients feel a significant difference after a session of shockwave. However, they may experience temporary soreness or tenderness for a few days following the procedure, as the shockwaves stimulate an inflammatory response, which in turn aids the body’s natural healing process.

Routine activities can be resumed after each treatment. If there is excessive soreness or discomfort in the area cold packs can be used, though it is better to let the body’s inflammatory response aid in the healing of the tissues that have been treated. Concurrent physiotherapy is important to address the underlying injury.


Shockwave Therapy is used in the treatment of many musculoskeletal conditions, primarily those involving connective tissues such as ligaments and tendons. It is an effective treatment method for a number of conditions, a few of which are listed below: 


  • This is an absolute contraindication for treatment to the stomach. However, treatment to the ankle in pregnancy would be acceptable.
  • Clotting disorders/patients on anti-coagulants. Shockwave can cause bleeding for these patients.
  • Joint replacements: Shockwaves can potentially loosen joint implants.
  • Shockwave can increase cell production and thus they are not applied to areas of infection.
  • Cancer: Shockwave to cancerous tissue could encourage cell growth in cancer tissue.
  • Corticosteroid injection: Shockwave is not recommended at the site of treatment for six weeks as steroid injections tend to weaken the area.

You can consult one of our Physiotherapist if you suffer from a condition that might need treatment with a shockwave. Call us for an appointment or send your queries to: