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Heel Pain Exercises

One of the most effective treatment options for plantar Fasciitis is stretching. Tightness if the Achilles tension and the calf muscles, increases the prevalence of plantar Fasciitis. This is due to tightening in these muscles, which increases dorsiflexion (upward movement) of the large toe and stretches the plantar fascia causing it to inflame.

1. Achilles tendon and plantar fascia stretch

First thing in the morning, loop a towel, a piece of elastic or a tubigrip around the ball of your foot and, keeping your knee straight, pull your toes towards your nose, holding for 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times for each foot.

2. Wall push-ups or stretches for Achilles tendon

The Achilles tendon comes from the muscles at the back of your thigh and your calf muscles. These exercises need to be performed first with the knee straight and then with the knee bent in order to stretch both parts of the Achilles tendon. Twice a day do the following wall push-ups or stretches: (a) Face the wall, put both hands on the wall at shoulder height, and stagger the feet (one foot in front of the other). The front foot should be approximately 30 cm (12 inches) from the wall. With the front knee bent and the back knee straight, lean into the stretch (i.e. towards the wall) until a tightening is felt in the calf of the back leg, and then ease off. Repeat 10 times. (b) Now repeat this exercise but bring the back foot forward a little so that the back knee is slightly bent. Repeat the push-ups 10 times.

3. Stair stretches for Achilles tendon and plantar fascia

Holding the stair-rail for support, with legs slightly apart, position the feet so that both heels are off the end of the step. Lower the heels, keeping the knees straight, until a tightening is felt in the calf. Hold this position for 20-60 seconds and then raise the heels back to neutral. Repeat 6 times, at least twice a day.

4. Dynamic stretches for plantar fascia

This involves rolling the arch of the foot over a tennis ball or a heel pain massager etc, while either standing (holding the back of a chair for support) or sitting. Allow the foot and ankle to move in all directions over the object. This can be done for a few minutes until there is some discomfort. Repeat this exercise at least twice a day. The discomfort can be relieved by rolling the foot on a cool drinks can from the fridge.

5. Pen Roll and Alphabet Exercise

Place a pen on the floor and try to pick the pen up curling all your toes around the pen. Once you have the pen hold for 5 seconds and repeat. Also spell out the alphabet with your large toe, repeat 3 times for each foot. Both exercises help to focus the stretch of the plantar fascia and promote healing.


Heel Pain Exercises

Causes of Heel Pain

  • The most common cause of heel pain is over pronation, this is when your foot rotates in too much as you walk. You really need to treat the underlying cause of the heel pain as soon as possible to prevent any further damage to the plantar fascia. View the Dr Foot Sport Insoles which are for sport shoes or the Dr Foot Pro Insoles for everyday shoes.
  • Excessive load on the foot from obesity is a major cause of plantar fasciitis. Which is why this condition is common in middle aged and over weight adults.
  • A sudden increase in weight, such as pregnancy can also lead to plantar fascitis. In such cases a soft comfortable heel cup works wonders, view the product here
  • A sudden increase in walking or a sporting activity can also be a contributing factor. A classic example of when this condition can develop is when a post man has returned to work after a period away from the job.
  • Tight plantar fascia (this is often caused by tight calf muscles). One of the most effective methods of stretching the fascia to speed up recovery is by using a unique product called the FXT night splint which allows you to sleep comfortably while gently stretching out the plantar fascia. View the product here
  • Excessive flattening of the arch on weight bearing i.e. flat feet. People with flat feet are more at risk of developing this condition, a simple orthotic in the shoe can prevent and treat heel pain for people with flat feet. View product here
  • Biomechanical problems (walking abnormalities) is a major cause of plantar fasciitis.
  • Different types of arthritis can also lead to this condition, such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Treatment for Heel Pain

  • Orthotics- One of the most effective treatment options. View the Dr Foot Pro Insoles.
  • Silicone Heel Cups- Treats morning heel pain and provides excellent support and pain relief..
  • Reusable Hot and Cold Gel Packs- Proven therapy for plantar fasciitis by alternating application of hot and cold, coupled with massage, works wonders to relieve pain, reduce swelling and promote healing. Use ice pack in the morning and heat pack in the evening.
  • Plantar Fascia Night Splints- Immobilizes and stretches fascia and can be effective if used for several weeks.
  • Stretching exercises for plantar fascia and Achilles tendon - Can provide effective results if combined with other treatment options. (click here to view recommended exercises)
  • Stretching aids- The Pro Stretch stretches the foot in the proper position to relieve heel pain, click here to view product.
  • Ultrasound and Lasers- Found to have little or no benefit.
  • NSAIDs (Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs)- These treat the symptoms and provide temporary relief but do not treat the underlying cause.
  • Steroid/local anesthetic injection- Not one of our preferred treatment options, click here to view image.
  • Surgery- 'Open' or endoscopic plantar fascia release. No good evidence of effectiveness and complications include increased pain, nerve injury, fascial rupture and infection.

Dr Foot Recommends

Silicone Heel Cup

£ 19.99

Dr Foot Pro Insoles stop heel pain

£ 23.00

Review: Treat those sore aching heels

Do you suffer from morning heel pain or heel spurs? If so, the Heel Pain product range is for you. Our 100% super-shock absorbing soft silicone heel products can reduce your heel pain instantly. The result? Relief. The surprise? The price. Our heel products are both effective and affordable.

View other heel pain products now

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"I love the Dr Foot Sports Insoles! I am an avid runner, with over-pronation and a family history of foot and leg pain. The Dr Foot Sports Insoles make running possible for me. I've tried many other insoles and none of them work as well as Dr Foot. I'm currently training for my second marathon, and my Dr. Foot Sports Insoles are protecting me from injury. Thank you!"

Miss Smith Michigan, USA