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Treating Plantar Fasciitis with Active Release Techniques (ART®)


An image of a foot indicating Plantar Fasciitis pain

Plantar fasciitis can be a debilitating condition characterized by sharp pain in the heel, particularly during activities like walking or running. If left untreated, it can significantly impact one's quality of life. Fortunately, there are effective treatment options available, one of which is Active Release Techniques (ART®). In this article, we will explore the benefits of ART® for plantar fasciitis and how it can help alleviate pain and promote healing.


Understanding Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the base of the toes, providing support to the arch of the foot. When this tissue becomes inflamed or irritated, it can lead to plantar fasciitis. Common symptoms of plantar fasciitis include sharp pain in the heel, especially after periods of rest or physical activity, stiffness, and chronic irritation.

Causes of Plantar Fasciitis

While there isn't always a definitive cause for plantar fasciitis, several factors can contribute to its development. These include:

  1. Age: Plantar fasciitis is more commonly seen in individuals between the ages of 40 and 60.

  2. Body Mechanics: High arches, flat feet, and an uneven gait can increase tension in the plantar fascia.

  3. Physical Activities: Engaging in activities that place repetitive stress on the feet, such as aerobic exercise, long-distance running, or hiking, can contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis.

  4. Weight Gain: Excess weight can increase the pressure on the feet, leading to strain on the plantar fascia.

  5. Prolonged Standing: Occupations that require extended periods of standing can also contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis.

How ART® Can Benefit Plantar Fasciitis

Active Release Techniques (ART®) is a specialized movement-based massage technique that can effectively treat soft tissue pain and injuries, including plantar fasciitis. It can be used as a standalone treatment or in combination with other tricks of the trade to restore full motion and function, release trapped nerves and vasculature, and improve the texture and resilience of soft tissues.

During an ART® session, the patient actively moves their foot through a range of motion while the practitioner applies moderate pressure to the affected area. This targeted movement forces shortened tissue to lengthen to their original lengths, helps increase blood supply to the fascia, improving circulation and expediting the healing process. Additionally, ART® breaks up scar tissue and adhesions, promoting tissue flexibility and reducing pain.

The ART® Treatment Process

ART® treatment for plantar fasciitis typically involves approximately 6 sessions, depending on the severity of the condition. Each session focuses on releasing tension and adhesions in the affected area. The patient actively participates in the treatment, following the practitioner's instructions to move their foot through different ranges of motion.

ART® therapy aims to restore optimal function and reduce pain by addressing the underlying soft tissue issues. It also encourages patients to take an active role in their healing process by following additional self-care measures such as wearing a night splint, a specific taping of the area, wearing supportive footwear, maintaining a healthy weight, and strengthening calf muscles.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will plantar fasciitis go away without treatment?

Ignoring plantar fasciitis can result in chronic heel pain that hinders regular activities. In cases treated improperly, the condition may not go away. It's important to seek treatment to manage and alleviate the symptoms of plantar fasciitis sooner than later.

What can I expect in an ART® session?

ART® sessions are non-invasive and known to provide effective pain relief. A certified ART® practitioner will examine the affected area and apply tension while instructing the patient to lengthen and shorten the fascia. Precise pressure is applied to release tension and scar tissue, promoting healing and improved function.

Connect with Performance Care Stretch Clinic

If you are experiencing pain caused by plantar fasciitis, consider seeking treatment with an ART® certified provider. Performance Care Stretch Clinic offers comprehensive wellness services, including ART® therapy, to help you find relief and improve your overall health.

Contact Performance Care Stretch Clinic to discuss treatment options with their ART® Certified Provider.


Active Release Techniques (ART®) can be a highly effective treatment for plantar fasciitis, providing relief from pain and promoting the healing process. By addressing soft tissue issues, ART® helps restore optimal function and reduces discomfort. If you are suffering from plantar fasciitis, consider consulting an ART® certified provider to explore this treatment option and regain your quality of life.


Image Source: FreeImages

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