Plantar Fasciitis Heel Pain - What is it?
Plantar Fasciitis is a commonly reported condition which ultimately results in heel Pain.
Plantar Fasciitis is an injury to the large fibrous band of connective tissue under the arch and heel. This band of tissue is referred to as the "PLANTAR FASCIA".
Plantar Fasciitis is a condition of the Plantar Fascia in which the plantar fascia becomes sore and thickened.
The Plantar fascia is medically known and referred to as the "plantar aponeurosis" and is made up primarily of longitudinally positioned collagen fibres.
It is anatomically divided into three bands that originate from the heel and progress forwards. These are known as the medial, central and lateral bands of the Plantar Fascia.
It is important to understand that the Plantar Fascia is fascia not muscle and cannot contract in any way. However, a healthy plantar fascia does lengthen and functions almost like a spring to help support the arch. This is achieved as the plantar fascia is tensioned through the great toe extension mechanism (Windlass Mechanism). As it is tensioned it helps support the arch.
Currently the medical literature reports that Plantar fasciitis is a degenerative process of micro tears of the plantar fascia in which fascial thickening and scarring as well as a breakdown of collagen results rather than inflammatory changes.
Hence many referring to this condition now as Plantar Fasciopathy (which means condition associated with the Plantar Fascia) rather than Plantar Fasciitis (which means inflamed plantar fascia).