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Foot Assessment

As a self-guided first step, the goal is to identify the source of foot pain based on common symptoms related to Plantar Fasciitis. The following will direct you to more information about common causes, which will help inform your next steps in the ARC Running process: Rehabilitation and Conditioning. At any point, you are welcome to schedule a personal assessment with our PT.

Plantar Fasciitis (ttsz, Getty Images) b
Plantar Fasciitis Side (VectorMine, Getty Images)
  • Pain with first step(s) in the morning, usually easing after movement (e.g. several steps)
  • Point tenderness under the foot (e.g. on the plantar fascia)
  • Pain can occur when you bend your foot and toe back (dorsiflexion), stretching the plantar fascia
  • Plantar fasciitis occurs in 10% of runners, with some research even suggesting up to 22%
  • Note: Plantar Fasciits is almost a misnomer; the “iitis” indicates inflammation, but research suggests there are no inflammatory cells. Therefore, this condition may not respond to anti-inflammatory medication (NSAIDs like Ibuprofen). The primary mechanism of pain is overuse and microtears in the plantar fascia.

  • On the bottom of the foot, the plantar fascia is a ligamentous band that connects the heel bone (calcaneus) to the front of the foot (metatarsal heads), and helps with shock absorption and arch support when running 
  • The thick fascia also blends with the Achilles tendon on the back of the ankle
  • The loading of the fascia creates a truss to help support the foot with minimal muscle activity (called the “Windlass Mechanism” – see image below)
Windlass Test (Physiopedia)

Still Need Help?

You are welcome to meet virtually with our PT for additional feedback and assessment. Otherwise, continue to the next step to assess potential causes of your pain.