Here in Austin, we like to think we know a thing or two about good music—the area is a magnet for great artists, great concerts, and great festivals all year long. It’s amazing to hear a group of practiced musicians totally in sync with each other, especially when you consider that even one player falling out of sequence can have disastrous effects on the entire performance.
Oftentimes, foot pain is a result of muscles (or muscle groups) that get out of sync with one another. Muscles work in teams to flex and extend, moving you about smoothly and painlessly. So when one group gets too tight, it creates pain and problems throughout the system.
The remedy for a band out of sync is more practice. The remedy for foot pain is more complicated, but it often includes some physical therapy, including simple stretches you can do at home. For example, calf stretches (particularly those that target the gastrocnemius) are often a great way to help relieve heel pain from plantar fasciitis or a tight Achilles. Others include resistance exercises (using a towel or resistance band to provide opposing force as you flex or point your foot) or even simply grabbing and stretching your toes.
Some stretches you can even do while sitting at the table or watching TV. Picking up marbles or curling a towel with your toes, for example, can help strengthen muscles to relieve pain and resist progression of hammertoes. You can also give yourself a pain-relieving foot massage by rolling a tennis ball or water bottle under your foot.
If you’re suffering from chronic heel pain, there’s a good chance that some stretching—in concert with other conservative treatment procedures—can be a big part of your pain management plan. To learn more about what sorts of stretches you can do to alleviate your discomfort, call Dr. Keith McSpadden at North Austin Foot & Ankle for an evaluation. You can request an appointment online; otherwise, call 512-593-2949.