How to Fix Plantar Fasciitis (NO MORE HEEL PAIN!)


What’s up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. Today I’m going to show you how to fix plantar
fasciitis once and for all. All right, guys. If you have plantar fasciitis you know it. It’s one of those ailments that you instantly
know you’ve got because you’ve got that defined heel pain. Almost that sharp, knife-like pain in your
heel. Especially when you get up in the morning,
you take that first step, and it feels like someone is ripping the under foot apart. That is essentially what’s happening there
because the plantar fascia – which we’re going to show with this piece of band here
– is absorbing stresses that it never has to in the first place. The problem is, all our focus and attention
when we go for treatment is on this plantar fascia. That’s the mistake because, again, this
is not the cause. This is the result of what’s happening somewhere
else. So, when we look at the foot, when we look
at the plantar fascia, we know what it does. It’s supposed to attach back from the heel,
up toward the toes, and its main function is to provide some support for that arch that
we have in our foot. A lot of us don’t have it. I have none because I have an extremely flat,
pronated foot. Well, it’s supposed to provide some good
support for the arch. What it’s not supposed to do is have to
provide support during propulsion and to absorb all the forces of propulsion when we move
our body. That’s what we’re asking it to do by having
things wrong with the mechanics of our ankle, or our knee, or hip, or even our back. Literally, our midback can cause issues down
here and you have to address those. If we’re talking about this, why is it so
important? Because it comes down to the heel. You can see here with the heel, there are
a couple of states I want you to see, guys. The first thing is, we know we have mobility
of the heel. This is the calcaneus. We know that it can move either in this way
– inverted – or it can move out – everted. When it moves out, that’s associated with
this ability of the mid foot to adapt to the surface that it’s on. It becomes a lot looser. So, if I take this, and I move it out – you
can do this on your own foot, by the way. You’ll feel this. If you move the heel out you can see that
all the joints in the mid foot are nice, and loose, and mobile, and I can twist and turn. That’s what happens when our foot hits the
ground. We go into this pronation, the heel kicks
out, we go into this pronation, so we have the ability to adapt to the surface. Even if it’s an uneven surface. You want to have the ability to have that
mobility to absorb the stresses of that. If your foot was a rigid lever here and it
hit the ground every time, there’s nowhere for the forces to go, except up into the knee,
up into the hip, or even up into the low back. Which can cause problems. You want that mobile adaption here to absorb
those forces. The next thing it does, if I turn it in and
I invert it, what’s happened here? All that mobility is gone. You can see this is a lot more rigid here
than it was before. That’s a very important thing – and a
good thing – because what happens when I want to push off my foot when I’m running? I want it to be rigid, so I can push off and
gain a lever and propulsion forward. If it was trying to push of a loose foot,
you could see that would be unstable and that’s not really productive, in terms of propelling
me any distance with any force. There’s the problem. The problem is, and what happens is, when
we get into a position where we need to propel; that foot is in an unstable, loose state. That heel is everted instead of inverted. So how do we fix that? What’s the cause? Well, there are a lot of causes. Let me show you. We come back up. Again, people spend all their lives rolling
it out with a tennis ball, getting an ultrasound on the bottom there, doing all the things
to try and loosen that up, and that is not the problem, guys. That’s not the problem. You’re going to get temporary relief of
a symptom, but you’re not going to get at the cause. So, throw that away. What we do is, if I’m in – let’s talk
about walking and running. As I start to walk, again, when my foot hits
the ground here, I need the ability to adapt to that surface. That’s going to allow the absorption of
forces, so I don’t get too much going into my knee, or hip, or low back. Then as I start to go through and walk through,
I need this to lock up, at some point. We need that heel to kick in. So, I get that ability of that foot to the
original lever, so I can propel off, and then step through, and then go again. Well, I could tell you this: if you have tight
calves, you’re going to lose the ability to do that. You’re going to cause a timing issue down
here in your foot that will be felt and absorbed by the plantar fascia in a way that it’s
not meant to handle. Let me spell that out for you a little more
and show you how that works. Let’s say I’m – let’s work on this
side here. As I’m through, you can see that’s the
moment and gate I need the most dorsiflexion. Meaning, the bending of the ankle upward. Closing down this angle between my shin and
my foot. I need dorsiflexion here. So, as I go through, if I don’t have dorsiflexion
– why? Because I have tight calves and I can’t
get that. What’s going to happen? I’m going to get dorsiflexion, but not from
here. I’m going to get it through that mid foot. How do we get that dorsiflexion here through
the mid foot? We have to make sure it’s loose. We have to make sure it’s unlocked. We have to make sure that heel is kicked out. So, what we do is, if you look at it – and
I’m going through here. I don’t have any more dorsiflexion, but
I know I need it because I need to be able to load this hip up to be able to come through;
what am I going to do? At that point, I’m going to take it from
here by keeping the heel kicked out by having the foot collapsed down. Guess what happens now? Now, when I got to take a step – and I’m
not just talking about taking one. I’m talking about running a mile and taking
hundreds, and thousands of steps. Every time, I’m pushing off an unstable
foot. A loose, floppy foot. The only thing that can provide support for
that is that lousy, little plantar fascia under your foot, which is not designed to
do that. Support the arches standing? Great. But to be able to supply the rigidness of
the foot to be able to propel yourself? No chance. So now I try to push, and I try to push, and
I try to push, and I do that over, and over, and over again; that creates a lot of inflammation
and strain in that tendon. Over time, it can cause some tension stress
on that tendon this way. Which causes heel spurs to form because of
all that traction stress. And it’s just a big mess. But you need to stretch your calves out. So, we talked about some other causes. I’m going to get into those in a second,
but what’s the problem? What would you do for your calves? “Well, I’ll just go hang off here. Like this. If I just do this, and I hang down” – this
thing is going to fall over on me. If I’m here, and I stretch my calves like
this, on the stairs, that should do it.” No. That won’t do it. That won’t do it because you’re not mimicking
the stress that you’re under when you’re at that moment in that backside gate that
you need to fix. So, what you would do is a stretch over here
against the wall. You’re probably saying to yourself “Well,
I’ve done this before. Okay, do that calf stretch? Yeah, do that with both your knee bent, and
with your knee straight so you work the gastrocnemius and the soleus, and I should be good to go.” Not really. There’s something you’re overlooking here. If you remember, when I took this position,
that position of the heel. We said that the problem was that the heel
was kicked out at that point. We want the heel to be able to be inverted,
kicked in so we can turn it into that rigid lever we can propel from. So, if we’re in that position here, what
you want to do in order to turn this heel back in the proper position to be inverted
here, you want to drive your foot across your body here. You want to drive your leg across your body. So, it’s not just this way because if I’m
doing this, I’m just feeding more into that down, and in position, which is part of the
problem. I can turn it on by just allowing my foot
to come and reach this way. So, as I reach into the wall that way and
stretch back here, now what I’ve done, as you can see, I’ve kicked that heel in. Which has turned this foot into the lever
it’s supposed to be. Now I’m stretching out the calf in that
position. Just like that. What we can do is make it more dynamic, where
go and reach across the body that way. But as I reach in, I’m still pushing down,
making sure this heel is in contact with the ground to stretch that calf out. If I wanted to turn in all three dimensions,
I could try to rotate back toward you guys there, and you can see that just by rotating,
how the heel has to kick in, and I maintain that stretch. You walk away from that stretch and you’re
like “Wow! That feels a lot looser.” Now, if I’m in this position here, my heel
is better able to absorb those stresses and turn into that rigid lever without having
to be thrown onto that plantar fascia, which is the problem. Now, how could other things be causing it,
and what could you do? Outside of doing that stretch – which, by
the way, a quick way for you tell – if you have pain, say, in my left foot, and you go
to test your calf flexibility; if you notice you have tight calves, that is almost always
the cause of the problem that you’re dealing with. So, you would stretch the calves like I said. You do this religiously. Every, single day. Just go through it for about three to five
minutes every, single day. Sometimes multiple times a day. Over the course of a few weeks, by taking
the stress off the plantar fascia that inflammation will go down and your problem will be solved
once, and for all. But, let’s say you test your calf on that
side and it’s loose. You don’t have any tightness in your calf,
but you still have pain there. Well, then you’ve got to look at the other
side. Problems in the other side can cause loading
issues on that side. So, let me give you an example. We talk many times here about the importance
of having glute medias strength, and how a weak glute medias – and squatting alone
isn’t going to do it, guys. Deadlifting alone is not going to do it. You need to strengthen those muscles independently. If I have a weak glute medias that does this,
we know it’s that Trendelenburg Gate that Jesse demonstrated so well back in that anterior
pelvic tilt video. If this drops because this is loose here,
what has it done to this foot? You can see what happened. Again, if I put my weight this way, because
I have a weak glute medias on this side, you can see it’s collapsed this foot. It’s kicked the heel out on this side. It’s made the arch fall here. It’s created that loose midfoot. So now if I’m trying to run and I’ve got
a weak glute medias on the opposite side, you can see how all those things are going
to happen to you again. I’m going to have that midfoot trying to
propel an unstable foot, and we’re going to have a lot of issues. So, you want to strengthen this opposite side’s
glute medias. I’ve done a whole video on that, on how
to od that. I’ll link those at the end of this video. But you would do something like, if I was
trying to strengthen this glute medias I’d stand up here against a wall, I’d let it
drop out to the side, and then I’d lift it up and squeeze in. So, drive this hip toward the wall. This is just going along for the ride. Drive it in, squeeze. Drive it in, squeeze. You can feel it right here, in that glute
medias, doing all the work. You can do that – you can even weight it
by using a resistance band as well. Now, one last thing. I talked about all the way into the low back,
or the midback. How the hell could that have any impact on
what’s going on? Well, when you walk, you’re supposed to
be able to rotate. You don’t see it as much, but we do. Obviously, as we step, we rotate. With every step we take. So, let’s say I’m able to rotate this
way. I’m going to over rotate this way. What happens as I rotate this way? You can see this foot comes down. It goes from here, and down. So, that means if I can rotate in this direction,
this is going to come down. If I can’t rotate back, that’s going to
cause a problem in our ability to get out of that position here. If I lack rotation in the opposite direction,
that’s going to prevent me from being able to – in a magnified way, as we do step,
after step, after step, after step, and run, after run – that’s going to prevent me
from being able to get off that unstable foot. That’s going to cause a problem. So again, an inability to rotate can cause
that foot to be put in the same position. So, you want to maintain thoracic extension
because thoracic extension gives you the ability to rotate. I can’t rotate much when my spine isn’t
extended. If I can get full thoracic extension – again,
watch the video that we did on the posture fixes and how to do that. It’s critical. You need to maintain thoracic extension. But if I could get there, and then I could
do rotation as well, and we can work on that with a drill I’m showing you right here
– which I’ve shown you many, many times before. Those will now allow you to maintain good
mobility through your spine, so it doesn’t down-load, toward your ankle, and into your
plantar fascia, once again, causing all these issues. So, the highlight here is that you’ve got
some things to work on. The first thing you need to do is figure out
what is essentially causing your pain. Run through some test to see your stiffness
and flexibility on those ankles. Assess your glute strength, see if that could
be an issue. Once you’ve identified it, guys, it’s
all going to make sense. But for heaven’s sake, stop looking at your
plantar fascia and blaming it saying “Why is this damn thing not working? Why is rubbing this ball not maintaining a
solution to this for the long-term?” Because that’s not the problem. That’s never the way to solve it, guys. You’ve got to look above at the other joints
to see what’s going on. We’re one big, kinetic chain. So, there you have it, guys. I hope you’ve found this video helpful. We always try to put the science back in strength
here. Again, it’s a bit of a detailed explanation,
but I think the guys that are suffering from this – and girls – are going to really
appreciate the explanation because they’ll finally understand why they haven’t been
able to solve it. If you’re looking for programs that build
in the science in everything we do, all our training, all our workouts are built on science. You can get them over at ATHLEANX.com. In the meantime, if you’ve found the video
helpful let me know below and leave your comments on what other things I haven’t covered,
that maybe I could help you address. I’d be glad to do those in the days and
weeks ahead. If you haven’t already, guys, please subscribe
and turn on your notifications so you never miss a new video from us. All right. See you soon.

100 thoughts on “How to Fix Plantar Fasciitis (NO MORE HEEL PAIN!)”

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  2. Love your explanation perfect for me I'm going to try this I do have the same kind of problem on my heel but I definitely love the way you explain everything

  3. This is the best explanation. Btw this is the exact problems i have since i have been working 6 years all ready in the pool and beach area in aruba on the sand i have those exact inflamations over the course of 6 years walking on the unstable ground plus i’m over weight.

  4. I fixed it myself!! My doctor said "oh, you have plantars fasciitis"!!! Nothing else!!!??? I had to research it myself!! The calf muscles leading all the way to the heal were too tight, pulling everything up! Do what I call "runners tree push" stretch and other stretches to pull the toes toward the knee! Also keep the hips moving!! This may be different for younger people, but I'm 56 and was sedentary. I have gotten so much relief from stretching in this manner.

  5. the best way to solve is not to run. Running jams the hips and muscles in legs become mis-aligned causing tight calf and achilles

  6. I put "plantar fasciitis" in the search, 3rd video is Jeff and the thumbnail already confirms that is my problem. You're an encyclopedia man!
    EDIT: weak glute medius, I can feel it burn and 2 minutes of squeezing, the problem is almost gone for now. THANKS JEFF! 100 THUMBS UP!!

  7. Ty, for the info. I'm going to do the excercises you suggested. I'm coming off a long sabbatical of 8yrs. Very nonactive lifestyle to full out work, workout. 4 hours of continuous lifting, pushing, pulling, bending, stretching, walking. Weights of packages aprox up to 50lbs plus. My planter's is making this near impossible to keep going. Hoping with your advice and instruction I can keep going. I'm 55 years old and dont want to get hurt this late in the game, Ty. Will give update!!

  8. Ok please read my comment my foot is in lots of pain when I put on my shoes but when I take it off I just have a little bit I literally buyed 8 shoes non of them work I'm confused??

  9. I wish Jeff offers a comprehensive "rehab program" that addresses all the dysfunctions and issues holistically, and puts you in the path of becoming an A(X)thlete

  10. I get temp relief from workin my medious but when im at work at LOWES on mu feet all day im back to calve tightness foot pain knee tightness ugh

  11. I have been through a lot of injuries seen a lot of doctors this man is a guru very passionate totally professional GOD BLESS YOU

  12. Hi Jeff,
    I have back heel pain on the inside of the foot. I believe it’s Achilles tendinitis. I play soccer often any suggestions would be appreciated.
    Thank you

  13. every time I watch one of his videos relating to my pain and put his methods into place he fixes the issues. Mantis 😊👌👍🏾

  14. Brilliant! thank you so much! I went to check out your training options, I was hoping to find one that focuses on posture alignment and proper movement. I get my workout from what I do every day which is very active, working in my yard and garden and landscaping. I just want to have the movement be building health not solidifying Bad habits. Already I have used principles from your no back pain ever video to lift and bend and it’s been great! More of that please!
    I don’t really need a meal plan or gym equipment exercises I want things I can bring into my life As it is. I actually cannot go into Gyms because of allergies to peoples perfumes and rubber mats and other chemicals. Any ideas or can you point me to one of your programs?
    Thank you

  15. I’m only 22 and I’ve been in excruciating pain due to having an extremely flat foot and zero arch support. After doing the first stretch for 5 minutes my pain has virtually disappeared. I am SO GLAD I came across this video

  16. Hi, I've suffered with this for 2-3 months now and am going to try this method. One question is: you said if you have tight calves do the stretch against the wall. However if you don't, try the other exercises. So, how can I test the tightness of my calves? Is there an assessment exercise you'd recommend? Thanks very much

  17. Thank you so much!!! It's been over a year of pain for me, I saw so many doctors so far and for real I found more information and concern in your video then any doctor I saw so far. From today I'm going to start with your suggestions. I hope that soon I'll be much better.

  18. U probably get so many comments thanking u. But from from my heart thank u so much. I almost want to cry right now. U just showed me all the mistakes i made . I said this man know what he is talking about . May God bless u abundantly. ♥️

  19. Perfect video. Never get told to look at the cause. Been told to roll a ball under my foot more times than I can remember. Going to try these things today.

  20. Why does Jeff always advise doing something different than EVERY other site, and it works like a miracle cure. Why can't anyone else figure these things out!?! Thanks Jeff. Fixed my plantar fasciitis in time that I can still get some training in before my competition.

  21. I cannot thank you enough for giving me the tools and understanding to deal with a horrible pain in my heel. Many doctors did not come close to giving me anywhere near the on target full explanation you give as to what is causing the pain. Only pain pills(don't want them – won't fix problem), or major surgery. I now know what I have and now I know how to begin to fix it. Only a few weeks into using the guidelines you have given have resulted in me having a healthier foot, drastic pain reduction and hope once again for the future. Jeff God bless you for what you do. Thank you Thank you.

  22. I had plantar fasciitis in my feet many times..had steroid shots a few times and was doing stretches but nothing worked very well, these stretches worked right away and within a few weeks totally free from pain!

  23. When I do the stretches I feel the pull in my ankles not my calf too much.
    So, I investigated to see if it was ok to pull the connective tissue and yes it is, Yin Yoga, longer GENTLE holds. I wouldn't probably do it but the stretches , apparently calf muscles are stretched fine, but it's not fixing the PF. Just wanted to pass that along.

    Also, this video is a good part of the PF recovery, but it may not be all of it especially if you run , hike or work on your feet all day or some combination. Don't get discouraged.

  24. Once I started following the advice in this video, my pain went away after a few weeks. Prior to this video, I had been suffering for over a year and the pain was not going away. This video is gold.

  25. Dont know if this can ever be fixed by stretches but im having severe toe pain on the bottom of my one of my left toe, that doesnt always happen but when it does it's a sharp stinging pain.

  26. Everything you said is just confusing… the bottom of my heel (not my arch) hurts. I play baseball, and it hurts when I run and it’s only my right foot. And suggestions? It’s like a general pain, nothing sharp.

  27. Man, thanks a lot, I just discovered your channel and all advices i tried so far have worked, this one is special, because the pain was bringing me to the point of thinking if it was wise to continue to train ….. now i can keep going, just thanks man. Btw, I am just 60 and very happy and can do some "wise-heavy" train

  28. Wow! Now I realize how wrongly i am actually walking! I always see my shoes' outer heal worn out because I walk invertedy 😣 you too all, observe your shoes. Now i have this problem 😞 but watching to cure it 🙂 like like

  29. Thanks for making this video. I have huge muscular – cut calves and have had them most of my life. They look like a they belong on a championship bodybuilder competitor; but not the rest of me – ha ha. But as I got older I started to have nothing but pain in my feet. I went to PT and was told the problem was that my calves were so tight that I had not shock absorption when I walked and they gave me the most basic calf stretch of standing on an angled foam block. That helped some but your explanation was far more detailed. I will start to do the stretches you showed and see what happens. Anyway, thanks again for posting this. People like me really need it. Just between you and me, my calves are natural and even though I taught karate for many years, my calves and my brothers are just huge and cut; we did not earn them. Same thing with my thighs. But it's all genes in my case. haha

  30. Thank you so much I've been suffering from this for almost a year I haven't seen a doctor for it …but I'm gonna do the stretches from your video 🙏😁❤

  31. OMG thank you so much! I’ve been hobbling around with terrible foot pain for 2 weeks since my first 10k thinking I’ve ruined my foot. Did that wall stretch twice for 5 minutes and my foot is back to normal. MVP!

  32. Great info. Started out with plantar fasciitis when I was a kid in my left foot, but didn't even know there was a name for this. For the most part it went away, but came back in my 20's, then came back again about a month ago. Now I'm afraid to walk at all. But will try the exercises. Thanks. Blessings.

  33. Just back from Dr. and the only advise was wear Crocks or Birkenstocks and maybe get a steriod, and nothing about what I might be doing wrong. This video addresses possible causes of PF and what I can do about it. This seems something a podiatrist would know!! Thanks a million!!!

  34. I am a Physical Therapist and I am completely overjoyed to see the principles I teach daily to my patients echoed here. I am so often the last resort for so many who have been down the other PT, injections, etc etc path with little resolution. Awesome job on explaining both the "tight" person and the "weak" person and what to do for each.

  35. Jeff, you are a genius! I have used your techniques with incredible results, but this video is the best. I've struggled with plantar fasciitis for more than FIVE YEARS. I've tried everything. I applied the technique in this video and within 2 days the pain was 90% gone, that was more than a week ago. Thanks a million Jeff!

  36. I bruised both of my heels from a far height pls will this help me ? I fell right on My heels I'm so dumb omg. It was a single Injury I dont run or anything. Will this help me? Basically you just stretch your calves and that's it? I did it and I felt a little relief. sorry for the questions it's just every day I feel a stabbing knife pain in my heels and I almost cried it sos painful

  37. This gave me immediate relief. I'm hoping this will work tonight at work. After that 5th hour of standing its extremely painful.

  38. so to determine if my calves are tight, I should be able to keep my heel down and stand toes 5inches away from wall and touch wall with my knee without lifting my heel? That's seems very excessive to me so is that the right test? If so, I've got some tight calves, I'm like 2.5 inches away from touching wall with knee

  39. I am dying with plantar fasciitis pain!! It's so bad I can hardly walk on it sometimes and it aches at night when I'm trying to sleep. I will definitely start these exercises today. I have very high arches. Do you think arch supports in my shoes would help at all?
    My rheumatologist gave me a cortizone shot 10 weeks ago and I did get some relief but the pain is back even worse now. I'm 55, female, and have pretty bad systemic arthirits as well as immune system problems, mainly Primary Sjogrens Disease. Anything you can suggest I will do!!

  40. Wow! I had this pain and my doctor advised me to just take rest and not stretch my leg too much. But the pain came back again. Jeff, you explained better than my doctor. Love the work you put in Jeff. #LoveTeamAthlean-x

  41. My PF has been leaving me dull aches in my sole all day for a couple of weeks. I did these stretches this morning, and it’s really effective! 6 hours later and my foot still feels very relaxed, with very little PF aches while resting or walking.

  42. It could be Plantar Fascitosis not Fasciitis which means dead scar tissue caused by wearing shoes at a young age and stops the muscle controlling the big toe (Abductor Hallucis and Adductor Hallucis) stretching properly , thus causing dead tissue. Wearing shoes will slowly cut off blood supply causing dead tissue. Don't listen to this meathead who clearly doesn't know anything about this issue. There are currently 3 different main treatments to cure this. Shock wave, Amniotic Matrix and Radio frequency.

  43. i work 10 to 12 hours a day 6 days a week on my feet every minute and ive been suffering this for a couple months, doctor doesnt know what to do other that throw pills at it. i watched this video and yes i stretch every morning at work but never stretched crossing the front leg. doing that immediately made 50% of the pain go away !!!!!!!!! best video ive seen on youtube in a long time!!!!!!!

  44. Jeff, I am blown away with your explanation to help cure the cause of plantar fasciitis. After all my years as a Tennis Pro and studies in A&P and Kinesiology, I have never heard an explanation as in depth and simple to understand as you have presented. I have helped plenty of kids and adults with PF, but now that I have it at age 64, I have not been able to get rid of it. It has been because I have stretched this area of the gastrocnemius muscle to the plantar fascia improperly for the last 41 years. Thank you!

  45. holy amaze balls!! it worked for me using the calf stretch cross. just did it a few minutes after watching. the stabbing pricking pain went away! i'm going to do this every day now. do you have any for stretches for rotator cuff muscles?

  46. This man is much more beneficial than a doctor. Been suffering from this for about a week or so unfortunately, but I feel much better now by simply following these stretches. This man’s a damn scientist!

  47. I notice when I walk long distances (especially in bad shoes) my calves get really tight and I end up slapping my feet around because I don’t have that dorsiflexion. This makes a lot of sense. I’ve been struggling with foot pain and you are a god send 🙏🏼

  48. This has fixed my 76 year old father's foot! Sent him the link to your video and a week later he calls me to say his foot is almost 100% again! Thank you SO much!

  49. Just checking back in after a month of stretching like this – no more Plantar Fasciitis and I've been able to up my milage really comfortably. Thank you very much Jeff.

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