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Tapp out heel pain and plantar fasciitis

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  • Tapp out heel pain and plantar fasciitis

    Originally posted by Sherry 06/14/2004 : 10:20:31 PM PART 1

    Plantar Fasciitis is incredibly painful and can take months to treat. But, it is possible to see dramatic improvement with T-Tapp.

    I know because I once suffered greatly from this condition. And, I know it is a fairly common condition … especially among women and especially among women carrying extra weight.

    Given some recent misunderstandings about KLT and foot position, I have asked Teresa to review this note prior to posting. I’ve used multiple sources, including my own home-grown experience and opinions.

    What is Plantar Fasciitis and how do you know if you have it?

    How does T-Tapp help?

    What else can you do?

    Plantar Fasciitis – Cause and Symptoms

    The plantar fascia (“PF”) runs along the bottom of the foot and is a relatively thick ligament-like structure that starts at the heel, continues along the inside of the sole and ultimately sort of fans out to connect to the metatarsals (toes). Its purpose is to maintain the arch in the foot. It looks like this:

    As a foot extends to walk or exercise, the PF stretches. Lots of stopping and starting, starting a new activity, pronating the knees in, walking on a hard surface, new shoes, etc. can contribute to overstretching the PF. Regardless of the cause, the foot starts to sag into the PF creating pressure and inflammation. When it stretches too far and starts to tear, the condition is known as plantar fasciitis – and you’ll definitely know if you have it.

    Symptoms are very painful and typically run along the bottom of one or both feet. For some people, it can feel like a terrible, terrible bruise on the heel. In fact, this condition is sometimes called ‘heel spur’ but generally that is a misnomer. Sometimes, this ligament-like fascia can stretch so far that it pulls a piece of bone away from the heel but more frequently, the PF pulls against the heel causing an excess calcium build-up. Either hurts like the dickens!

    For others, the pain may migrate from the heel and include the entire bottom of the foot. That was how it was for me … incredible heel pain but also very intense pain from the heel to the balls of both feet.

    Whether in the heel or along the bottom, getting out of bed is the worse part of the day. When the foot is placed on the floor, the arch flattens and irritates the PF. I could barely walk many days upon first rising.

    How can T-Tapp help?

    When I first started T-Tapp, the pressure in the one-legged flamingo moves (a.k.a. balance, TTN, etc) and the Knee to Little Toe (“KLT”) stance were almost unbearable. In fact, I wasn’t sure I could do the workout at all. Yet, something deep inside kept saying that I must continue and that the workout would help. Over time, I’ve come to learn more about why this intuitive voice was correct.

    A commonly prescribed treatment for plantar fasciitis involves orthotics or special shoe inserts. The purpose of such shoe inserts is to support the arch to prevent the PF from collapsing down and becoming irritated. Unfortunately, this doesn’t do much to rehab or prevent the problem from recurring in the future.

    T-Tapp, however, lifts the arches during the workout and rebuilds the muscles in the feet for long-term rehabilitation. The basic T-Tapp stance with the feet hip-width apart, a hard tuck and femurs rolled out in the hip socket pulls the arches UP. More importantly, this stance starts to rebuild other muscles in the feet to support the PF. I very much believe this is what eliminated pain for me … rebuilding the muscles in the feet that allow a natural arch support.

    I wish I’d thought up a way to measure the change in my arches. I’ve always been extremely flat footed. But after three years of T-Tapp, I have a noticeable arch in both feet that was not there before. Although I don’t have a measurement to prove this from a more scientific perspective, that difference is definitely there.

    You can feel how T-Tapp lifts the arches yourself. Stand straight, feet hip-width apart, toes straight and feet straight. Notice your feet and arches. Also take note of the knees. Now assume the T-Tapp stance. Bend the knees until you can’t see your big toes, tuck the tush hard, roll the femur in the hip socket to the outside which pulls the knees into a Knee to Little Toe (“KLT”) position. Feel the arches lift?

    Walking with the toes straight is another T-Tapp principle that helps rebuild muscles in the feet. Who would think that something so simple could be an important pain-free ingredient for both the feet and knees? (Well, even the hips and more but we’ll save that for another discussion!)

    Try another experiment right now. Stand with your feet absolutely straight. Don’t trust yourself to judge … ask someone else to make sure the outside of your feet are straight and not turned out at an angle … not even a little.

    Check that your weight is evenly distributed on both feet. Notice how your arches feel. Now shift the right toes out to a slight angle. Recheck the weight and make sure it is equally distributed on both feet. Now note the arch on the right foot. Did it fall in some? As a sidebar, you might notice the right knee which likely pronated in as well. Turn the right toes so that the right foot is once again absolutely straight and weight evenly distributed. Note the arch again. Feel it lift? It is a little harder to feel the arch lift with the latter example compared to the basic T-Tapp stance. But with T-Tapp, you will be able to notice these differences more and more over time.

    Both the basic stance used throughout the T-Tapp workout and walking with straight toes will start to rehab the muscles in the feet in a way that supports the arches. This means the PF receives much better support which will reduce inflammation for pain-free feet. And, I mean pain-free for life … in any shoes.

    T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
    Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer

  • #2
    PART 2

    What else can you do other than T-Tapp to accelerate healing?

    Personally, I believe good shoes are a must especially during the rehab period. It was the pain of PF that led me to Sketchers cross trainers. These shoes provide a solid and well-cushioned base that was very helpful during recovery. They are my personal favorites for comfort even today. But, find a shoe that works for you with critical points being support and cushioning along the soles. Not all athletic shoes are created equally when it comes to cushioning in the soles. A hard surface in a shoe is not going to help relieve pain.

    Massaging the bottom of the feet is also critical. Start at the heel and press both thumbs into the center of the foot. Press in as hard as you can. Slide the thumbs up to the point just inside the ball of the foot. Press in and hold. Do this as many times a day as possible. Rolling your foot on a roll object such as a tennis ball or golf ball is often advocated. Personally, I found I had better control by massaging them with my hands.

    Prevention Guide recently detailed another PF stretch. It’s easy. Just sit with one foot over the knee and pull the toes of that foot back toward the shin.

    I also found Achilles stretches helpful. This involved standing with the toes on a step and slowly dropping the heel down below the step. In fact, tight calves may be another underlying contributor to plantar fasciitis so a good calf stretch is likely to be part of your cure. Of course, T-Tapp comes to the rescue there as well since the basic stance serves as a fabulous stretch.

    Contrast baths can also help. Start with icy cold water … as cold as you can stand it for a minute or two. Then, switch to warm water for four minutes (just above body temperature is fine). While soaking in warm water, move the feet by flexing hard (pull those tootsies up) and then softly pointing the toes.

    Brushing the bottom and top of the feet is always good stuff … whether you have PF or not. The feet are incredibly lymphatic and extra stimulation feels so good.

    You can also greatly help the heel pain by buying an over-the-counter donut silicone filled heel pad. The donut hole creates a spot for the area that is typically most inflamed and relieves pressure.

    You can buy over-the-counter arch supports as well. The purpose of arch supports is to pull the heels and toes closer together which SHOULD ease pressure on the PF. Think about it … this is exactly what the basic T-Tapp stance does as well which rebuilds muscles … not just provide an artificial support. But, the problem with over-the-counter arch supports is that they may not fit properly and they can actually increase pressure on the inflamed PF. This sends many people to a doctor for specially fitted orthotics.

    A doctor might also prescribe a night splint. This is a ski-boot like contraption that keeps the foot in a right angle stretching the PF throughout the night.

    There is a new roll-on ibuprofen product on the market called Roll Away the Pain. You can do a search online and find a variety of vendors. It is not appropriate to post such vendors here. This may or may not help but is something else to consider.

    I was able to avoid orthotics AND a night splint. Why? I am certain that T-Tapp rebuilt the supportive muscles in the feet. Today, I virtually never have PF pain. I still have a little trouble holding a flamingo move for extremely l o n g periods as Teresa sometimes does in clinics. If you’ve been to one of T’s clinics, you know just what I mean! (smile Teresa [IMG]file:///C:/Users/jehjo/Dropbox/T-Tapp%20for%20Jessi/T-Tapp%20Forums%20-%20Tapp%20out%20heel%20pain%20and%20plantar%20fasc iitis_files/icon_smile_big.gif[/IMG]) When that happens and I can’t take any more, I just stop and shake out the feet. Nothing else bothers my feet today … not even when wearing spiky cocktail heels. I once thought I would have to give up sexy shoes forever. Not so!

    If you are beginning T-Tapp and find it hard to manage the moves or holding the basic position, then do the same thing. Stop and kick out the feet. Then get right back to it. Keep working to extend how long you can manage to hold the basic stance but don’t push so far that you are in agony. The donut heel inserts along with a cushioned sole can really help you through the rehab process by reducing pain while T-Tapp rebuilds muscles.

    For more information, you can do a web search on the topic or consider the following link.

    This has a lot of medical jargon so if you aren’t interested in that, click on the link for patient information in the right corner. You'll find a new version of a No Big Toe exercise!

    Add some of the other tips above … contrast baths, frequent foot massage, donut shaped heel inserts and above all, good shoes.

    Whatever else, keep Tapping! That is what rebuilds muscles. YES, you too can beat plantar fasciitis!

    T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
    Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer


    • #3
      Posted - 06/14/2004 : 11:11:38 PM
      What a great post! I was able to cure my PF with stretching those "I'm gellin', are you gellin'?" things. But I quit and now it's started to come back, which doesn't have me worried, because I've started t-tapping! Thanks for sharing this!


      Elizabeth M. Sawyer
      Posted - 06/14/2004 : 11:25:45 PM
      Hey Elizabeth,

      Keep Tapping because that will deliver long-term results. I did use donut heel inserts and Sketcher shoes in the beginning but that was it - nothing else. Without such relief, the pain can be unbearable for some people depending on the degree of inflammation. So, relieve the sources of inflammation while also T-Tapping to rebuild those arch supporting muscles and increasing flexibility in the calves. It's a combination that can't be beat.

      For others, I realize the photo isn't working tonight and I'll try to fix that tomorrow.

      T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
      Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer
      Posted - 06/15/2004 : 12:15:30 AM
      When you say to have your feet straight, does that mean to have the inside edge or the outside edge of the feet parallel?
      Posted - 06/15/2004 : 12:19:05 AM
      Both! It one is straight, then the other will be too barring an extreme bunion condition. If in doubt, place two strips of tape on the floor about hip-width apart. Line up the lateral or outside edges of the feet along the tape. This is a great adjustment during the T-Tapp workout as well to make sure the feet are straight.

      I emphasized straight feet for the second 'experiment' because it is the difference between that and even a slight turn-out that is noticeable. It might take a little practice to feel this ... but once you get it ... you'll really get it.

      T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
      Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 02:12:26 AM
      Just want to add that I do think T-Tapp has helped my PF. My pain was so bad that I ended up getting a prescription anti-inflammatory, which allowed me to exercise more regularly. Now that I have been tapping more consistently and walking using t-tapp principles to the best of my ability, I have had remarkable improvement in the PF pain. It is wonderful to feel like I can move again without hobbling.

      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 11:22:43 AM

      For a trainer-in-training, posts like this is heaven! Thank you!

      T-Tapp Trainer in Training
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 1:39:13 PM
      Sherry, would you recommend wearing OTC orthotics while T-Tapping during the acute-pain phase, or just during non-Tapping times of the day?

      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 5:05:55 PM
      I will chime in and say ttapp helped my PF IMMENSELY!! I suffered for over a year. Did the podiatrist, custom inserts, the whole deal. Was devastated I had to wear GOOD sneakers (I highly recommend Ryka) constantly as I am a "barefoot whenever possible" person. Tapping was excruciatingly painful at first, but it eventually did help me get over the PF. Stretching before getting out of bed in the AM is a must. PF does not go away quickly, you must be vigilant in treating it. Good luck!

      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 5:14:16 PM
      Thank you Sherry, so precise!

      I have a friend, who's been suffering with this since last winter. I'm sending this information to her... just one more healthy reason to start tapping!

      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 7:45:10 PM
      Glad others have had the same healing experience! Aching feet are terrible and it is hard to describe how much this hurts to anyone who has never had it.

      Re orthotics ... if possible, try working out without them. This way, your muscles must do the work. If that isn't possible, then of course use them. Just my opinion.

      T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
      Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 9:01:22 PM
      i always make a point of read Sherry's posts....would not want to miss a word of her sage advice.
      i am not certain whether what i am experiencing is PF or not...tell me what you folks think would ya?

      here are my syptoms...large bump located on rear of heal...extraordinarly painful..noticed lately that swelling is now extenting to both sides of heal..(achilles tendon area)..pain radiates thru out foot and often up calf...only thing so far to mask pain is ibiprofen (sp)..but understand it has unpleasant long term try not to take it...
      there is also a smaller bump on left same location...i have high insteps..

      thanks for your input.
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 9:24:12 PM
      heeheehee...I not only read every single one of Sherry's posts, I copy and paste them into my "Sherry's TTapp Tips" file for future reference because they are so good! Thanks again for all the great information Sherry.

      IFPA Certified trainer
      TTapp Trainer, UTAH
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 9:29:36 PM
      G, I'd definitely see a doctor. You may be describing a simple bursitis but with such swelling and radiating inflammation, it is time for medical attention.

      Melynda, your smile always comes shining through!

      T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
      Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer
      Posted - 09/28/2004 : 10:04:10 PM
      This is why I haven't been tapping! The pain is so horrible in the a.m. and when I have to go and p/u the baby out of the crib in the middle of the night! I'm going to march on ahead even w/ the pain b/c I'm positive this is due to overweight problems! Thanks for a wonderful post!

      Posted - 09/29/2004 : 12:19:31 AM
      What a timely post, my daughter was tapping but quit when she developed this condition because she was in so much pain.
      I printed this off for her and am hoping she will be able to get back to tapping with all the info you shared. She was wearing clogs a lot of the time and has found out she needs something with more support.
      Thanks so much.

      Posted - 09/29/2004 : 12:25:33 AM
      Ana Lee and Maggie's daughter .....

      Definitely massage the feet as often as possible as described. Heel inserts for regular shoes can also really help. Stretch the achilles often. Make sure your workout shoes are super comfortable and now is the time to check on Skechers Energy cross trainers if you haven't already done so. Maybe try the roll on ibuprofen. As said above, keep Tapping to rebuild the muscles.

      I know this really hurts but I also know it can get better! Just think, every workout is one step closer to being pain free.

      T-Tappin' best from Houston,Texas
      Sherry, T-Tapp Trainer