June 30, 2024

Why does my heel hurt?

Find out how to treat and heal your heel.

Why does my heel hurt?

Plantar fasciitis is a prevalent condition causing heel pain. It arises from inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue stretching along the bottom of the foot and connecting the heel to the toes. People typically experience a stabbing pain, most notably upon taking their first steps in the morning. While the pain usually subsides with movement, it may return after prolonged standing or rising from a seated position. It appears more frequently in runners and individuals who normally become active after a sedentary period.

What is the plantar fascia?

The plantar fascia is comprised of three distinct bands: medial, central, and lateral. The central band is the thickest and strongest, making it most susceptible to plantar fasciitis. Under normal conditions, the plantar fascia acts like a windlass mechanism, providing crucial arch support and stability. Additionally, it functions as a tension bridge within the foot, offering both support and shock absorption.

Signs and Symptoms

Plantar fasciitis often manifests as a sharp, stabbing pain in the sole of the foot near the heel. This discomfort is typically most pronounced during the initial steps taken after waking up, but it can also be triggered by prolonged standing or rising from a seated position.


  • Toe Curls: Sit, grab a towel, and scrunch it with toes (10x, 1-2 sets/day)
  • Big toe lifts: Sit, foot on floor and raise ONLY the big toe up (10x, 1-2 sets per day)
  • Toe Stretch: Standing, place toes on a rolled towel and raise heels within comfort (hold 10s, repeat 2-3 mins, 2-4 sets/day)
  • Calf Strengthening: Building strength in the calf can help take the pressure off the plantar fascia
  • Low-dye taping: In the acute phase, you can tape up the plantar fascia to offload the pressure
  • Icing: You can place a frozen bottle of water under your foot, or use an ice pack


It is dependent on how long you've experienced plantar fasciitis. Generally the early you manage it through physiotherapy treatment, the quicker it can settle.


Plantar fasciitis is a widespread condition causing heel pain, often accompanied by stiffness and limited flexibility in the foot. Early diagnosis and proper treatment, which may involve activity modification and physiotherapy exercises, significantly improve pain and restore full foot function. If you suspect you may have Plantar fasciitis, contact us or book online for a consultation to get your movement pain-free again. Ground Up Physiotherapy is located in the Campsie area off Kingsgrove Rd with plenty of street and underground carpark.