Heel pain is commonly caused by rolling over of the foot (“Over pronation”). As the foot pronates, the arch collapses and the muscles and supporting structures are forced to stretch and elongate. This puts stretch (traction) and strain on the Plantar Fascia running from the heel to the toes.
The plantar fascia is a thick, ligamentous connective tissue that runs from the calcaneus (heel bone) to the ball of the foot. This strong and tight tissue helps maintain the arch of the foot. It is also one of the major transmitters of weight across the foot as you walk or run. That’s why tremendous stress is placed on the plantar fascia.
When a patient has plantar fasciitis, the plantar fascia becomes inflamed and degenerative (worn out). These abnormalities can make normal activities quite painful. Symptoms typically worsen early in the morning after sleep. At that time, the plantar fascia is tight so even simple movements stretch the contracted plantar fascia. As you begin to loosen the plantar fascia, the pain usually subsides, but often returns with prolonged standing or walking.