Taping is considered as one of the treatment methods to reduce stress, pain and stiffness associated with plantar fasciitis in surrounding muscles and tissues. People suffering from plantar fasciitis have been witnessed complaining about limited range of movement. There are other symptoms and conditions associated with it too. In all such cases taping proves helpful and is a common method used widely by many athletes. This taping method reduces the impact of excessive stretching or stress on plantar fascia ligament and thus prevents from injury to further worsen or fibers from tear. A proper method in this regard is also essential in order to reap benefits of this treatment.
How Taping is Helpful with Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis sufferers can benefit from taping as a properly taped foot would experience enhanced stability and support for movement. Many a times, athletes tape feet during a certain activity to avoid stressing on affected muscles. Excessive stretching, abnormal movement, tears and further injuries are prevented with proper taping. Although some precautionary tips should be seriously considered to make taping prove helpful.
Different Types of Tapes Used for PF:
Taping for plantar fasciitis can be done using two types of tapes. One option is KT (Kinesiology tape) that is usually used when you plan to remain active throughout the day and needs support, improved circulation and stability with reduced pain and swelling. Another type is medical/regular athletic tape that also proves useful for supporting your feet but only gives relieve for a short term. It doesn’t help in treatment of plantar fasciitis.
KT tape usually can be left on your feet for many days until it begins to wear and peel off from your feet. While regular athletic tape can be left on your feet for the day but needs to be removed at night so that your skin can get space to breathe.
Proper Taping for Plantar Fasciitis:
Proper technique and method of taping is crucial as proper taping technique would give good support for your feet. If taping is not done properly, it may further complicate condition of your feet. So it is best to begin with a proper taping method. Although one can make adjustments in strain, width and other aspects of tape depending upon your specific foot type. Taping may appear a little difficult in the beginning but with time you will get used to of doing it and it would then be easier for you.
- Before beginning any of the taping methods for Plantar Fasciitis, you should consult your doctor in order to make sure that taping is an appropriate treatment for your condition.
- Feet should be clean and completely dried for taping.
- Taping can be applied in the morning and it would give your feet support and stability throughout the day.
- Taping can be done at night before going to bed and it would prevent morning heel pain.
- Taping should begin with your neutral and stable position of your foot.
- Taping should be done smooth and one should try to avoid wrinkles as it can give you blisters and other common problems.
- Make sure you don’t tape your foot too tight or it may hinder circulation in your foot.
- Any kind of numbness or circulation issues if witnessed, remove taping immediately.
Methods of Taping for PF:
A few methods have been developed by researches in this field and these techniques can be adopted depending upon specific and individual needs of your foot.
Low Dye Taping: This taping method is most appropriate if you are looking for some support for your ankle and foot. This taping method gives impressive support to feet that are facing pain and problems as a result of over-pronation. This taping method offers improved motion, relieves heel pain and supports plantar fascia ligament.
- Begin with your feet in neutral position.
- Start taping around heel beginning from big toe ending till the pinkie toe. Across this path attach an anchor tape.
- Now attach a tape stripe from big toe bottom to beginning point.
- Attach a tape stripe from pinkie toe bottom to the other side of heel in a way that it should form an X.
- Cover the foot to hill by attaching another tape stripe across the foot.
Arch Brace Taping: This is the simplest type of taping that needs you to apply a tape around arch at the middle of your foot. This taping would perform as a brace. For your feet. You can apply this taping over a sock too.
Longitudinal Arch Taping: This is the most supportive taping technique for plantar fasciitis yet at the same time it is simple too.
- Begin with your foot in neutral position.
- Apply tape stripes on your foot bottom beginning from toes to heel. One tape stripe in middle and two in sides.
- Before you apply tape, check dorsiflexion angle of your foot so that you can walk comfortably with your foot taped.
Although these techniques have been helpful but you can make some variations according to your specific foot condition.
There are certain conditions when taping should not be considered a treatment option for plantar fasciitis sufferers and these conditions include:
- In case if you are suffering from other feet injuries such as a strain or fracture.
- If you have some kind of skin allergy that this taping may trigger.
- If you suffer from any circulator problem or have diabetes.
- If you are witnessing an increase in pain or stiffness.
Taping alone may not work but in order to get best results with taping, you must use it in addition to other treatments for plantar fasciitis. Positive results can be attained over long run, when you treat this condition with proper pair of running shoes, addition of proper inserts for support, massage therapy, exercises for plantar fasciitis in addition to taping. In addition to that, taping can be performed by yourself but it would be better if you seek help of a professional physician trained to get this job done. In order to properly heal plantar fasciitis, you should always take advice of your physician before you begin taping or another new treatment.