Plantar fasciitis is caused by stress placed on the plantar fascia ligament, which causes small tears and inflammation. You’re more likely to have plantar fasciitis if you have foot arch problems like flat feet or high arches or if you’re a long distance runner. This is especially true if you run on downhill uneven surfaces. Plantar fasciitis can also occur as a result of sudden weight gain or poor shoe support. Signs include tenderness on the bottom of the foot, foot heel pain, mild foot swelling or redness, and stiffness or tightness at the arch of your foot. These exercises increase blood flow to the feet and warm the tissue. It’s best to do them first thing in the morning because it prevents the plantar fascia from becoming irritated after weight bearing impact. Each exercise should be done for 30 repetitions.

-Toe Scrunch and Splay Point your toe and flex your heal. Repeat 30 times.

-Ankle Pump Keeping your toes still, this time you’re just flexing and extending both feet at the ankle joint itself.

-The Roll Out Technique Massage the soft tissue with a ball (lacrosse, baseball, or tennis ball). Roll the ball back and forth across the long tendon on the bottom of the foot. This can be done by applying light to moderate pressure in a seated position or moderate to heavy pressure in a standing position.

-Self Mobilization Supporting the heel by holding it in place with one hand, take the toes into extension and flexion with your other hand.

-Heel and Toe Raise Do 30 heel and toe raises seated in a chair or on your bed and then stand up and do 30 more heel and toe raises.

Additional Plantar Fasciitis Advice

Additionally, give your feet a rest and add orthotic arch support to your shoes. Don’t walk on hard surfaces and use topical creams with natural anti-inflammatory treatments like arnica and ginger.

Sara Novak is a Natural Health Care Expert for Zax Health. Follow her on Twitter at @sarafnovak.