March 29, 2010


Thumb on the Plantar Fascia

A friend and I were chatting and she asked me how I'd been.  " I gotta bad case of Plantar Facsiitis, " I replied.  She laughed, thinking I was joking about having a "planting " obsession , which I do, but that's another story.

Even though I've had a minimally-invasive procedure done on my feet and it was 80 per cent effective, I still have pain if I walk or stand for long periods.  I was considering traditional surgery but according to what I read, it's only 50 % effective.

Then I read an article from the University of Rochester Medical Center saying that a new stretch has proven to be 75 per cent effective in relieving this condition which 2.5 million Americans suffer from.  I like these odds a lot better.

As " Necessity is the Mother of Invention ", Dr. Benedict DiGiovanni, an associate professor of Orthopaedic surgery at the University of Rochester experienced the pain of Plantar Fasciitis himself and developed this stretch.

PF is common in people ( like Moi ) who use their feet a lot and it happens to both young and old.

Here's how to do it :  Sit with one leg corssed over the other ( as in the example above ) and stretch the arch of the foot by taking one hand and pulling the toes back toward the shin.  Hold for a count of 10 and repeat the exercise 10 times at least three times a day. 

Do the stretches before getting out of bed if you already have PF or if you have a day of standing or walking planned, be sure to do a set or two before going out.  You are re-injuring yourself every time you walk without stretching.

Thank you Dr. DiGiovanni!


  1. I have a friend who has this. I can't wait to tell her about your technique.

  2. I have a friend that had this also. She went through surgery, special shoes, sleeping with some contraption, etc. She is better but still has to be careful about being on her feet too much and wearing the proper shoes. Take care, I hope you are successful.


  3. I had this for a long time (several years ago). I found that riding a bike eliminated the pain.

    Hope you feel better. I know how I would limp every time that I stood up and walked for the first few minutes.

  4. Hi Lily,

    Thanks for stopping by. Hope it helps your friend.

  5. Hi Eileen,

    I hope this technique also helps your friend. My case was more severe than most and has lasted for more than 2 years.

    I already feel better after doing the stretches.

  6. Hi Cameron,

    Glad to hear that the bike riding helped. It probably stretched the fascia. The sure sign of PF is the first painful steps when rising.

    I feel better already after doing the stretches.


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