Heel pain (Plantar Fasciitis) is a very common complaint seen by Podiatrists. Often, the pain is worse in the morning and after long periods of weight bearing. The plantar fascia and plantar flexor muscles are often tender to palpate and may contain myofascial trigger points. These trigger points are a result of the muscles shortening and thickening under increase loading stress or abnormal biomechanical influences.
When treating this condition you will most likely be told to massage your plantar fascia and other muscles of close attachment such as your calves which are likely to be involved in aggravating your condition. This is to ensure any trigger points are released and aids in stretching the muscles for better range of motion.
Tool Assisted Massage (TAM) is an effective way of releasing these myofascial trigger points. This technique is done through using an instrument. In order to treat heel pain using this technique, we first need to warm up the fascial tissue through gently running the instrument up and down the targeted tissue. Once this is complete any fascial restrictions are then focused on and released. It is important after each treatment session you keep hydrated. This technique is completed until an improved range of motion and decrease of overall pain is achieved.
Although massage is an effective way of managing this condition, it is important that it is done regularly and combined with other conservative treatment options.