The function of the foot is extremely important to the overall musculoskeletal function of the body. The foot is the base of support for most everyday activities. Like a game of Jenga, if the base is not solid, the entire structure will lean, wobble, and eventually collapse. If the musculature of the foot is not properly functioning, many structures both locally and globally will be affected. The intrinsic muscles of the feet can become deconditioned over time due to ill-fitting shoes, tight socks, and even some orthotics. Due to cramped spaces and the inability of the joints to function in their natural range of motion, our brains lose the neurological connection to the muscles of our feet, causing compensations. Luckily, neuroplasticity (the ability for our brains to change the neural circuits to our bodies) dictates that it is possible to improve and even reverse chronic instability of the foot, and thus joint pathologies and pain. This article will show you exercises to improve foot strength!
Plantar fasciitis is one of the most nagging and limiting orthopedic pathologies in the foot. It's estimated that nearly 2 million Americans experience plantar fasciitis each year and it is the most common condition of the foot in runners. Plantar fasciitis can be defined as inflammation of the plantar fascia and surrounding fascial tissues due to repetitive microtrauma from excessive traction and/or loading forces. However, that nagging heel pain that drives people to want to fix plantar fasciitis is typically not just an acute inflammatory condition but rather a chronic issue that is now revealing itself. In this article, we are going to discuss the common causes and risk factors for this heel pain, as well as how to fix plantar fasciitis!