One of the questions we receive most often concerns heel pain, which may begin during a long run and persist after the run. Some people even experience pain when putting weight on the heel the first thing in the morning and during normal daily routines.
At Paulseth & Associates Physical Therapy and Physio Performance Center, we’ve found that this heel pain is one of the most common complaints from runners and walkers, particularly those who suddenly increase their weekly mileage. Many factors may be involved and before deciding that long distance running is not for you because of heel pain, seek assistance from a medical professional to determine what the problem may be. Corrective action may eliminate the pain and return you to your running program rather quickly.
There are several things that may be causing pain. Some of them are:
- Shoe wear
- Tightened calf muscles
- Gait, including cadence, technique/error or velocity
- Biomechanical posture and function of your foot
- LE flexibility and strength
- Balance and overall posture
Whether heel pain occurs just once or is chronic, it should be evaluated as early as possible. Treatment usually can resolve the problem, allowing you to return to the Leggers training program. Treatment may consist of taping and/or shoe orthotics (inserts), gait training, replacing foot-wear, icing, NSAIDS or manual physical therapy. Early evaluation and treatment will help you make a rapid return to running.
Stephen Paulseth, MS PT SCS