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Best Running & Walking Shoes For People With Plantar Fasciitis

author image Erin Paige
Erin Paige is a medical professional living in the heart of Austin, Texas. She has a bachelor's degree from Portland Sate University centered in exercise physiology and health promotion, and has had significant exposure to the fields of orthopedics, sports medicine and physical therapy.
Best Running & Walking Shoes For People With Plantar Fasciitis
A couple is tying up their running shoes on the stairs. Photo Credit Ronnie Kaufman/Blend Images/Getty Images

Plantar Fasciitis can be a really painful condition that afflicts many active people from walkers to joggers to full on runners and sprinters. Selecting a proper shoe and replacing your shoes when they are worn out are necessary steps for promoting healing and preventing recurrence of this painful and invasive condition.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar Fasciitis occurs when your plantar fascia -- a flat band of connective tissue stretching between your toes and heel bone -- becomes strained, causing pain, inflammation, and weakness in your foot. It causes either one or both of your heels to ache when any amount of weight is placed on them and can get very severe following periods of standing, walking, or running.

Tip 1. Proper Fit

It may sound simple, but improperly fitting shoes is one of the leading causes for runners and recreational joggers or walkers to develop Plantar Fasciitis. When selecting a new shoe, consult with a sales professional and have them fit your feet for a shoe. Be sure to have them take into account both the length and width of your feet, and mention whether or not you notice any swelling in your feet when you exercise. Ensuring that the shoes you select fit properly and can account for changes in size that may occur while you exercise is vital to preventing recurrences of Plantar Fasciitis.

Tip 2. Pronation Correction

If your feet roll inward while you walk or run, you pronate. Pronation to some degree is very normal and prevalent in most of the population, however excessive pronation can lead to many injuries and is one of the leading causes of Plantar Fasciitis. Because of how common pronation is, almost every single major shoe brand has different styles that correct for this. When selecting a new shoe, visit a running shoe store; often, their sales staff are trained to be able to analyze your biomechanics and can tell you whether or not you pronate. They will be able to tell you specifically which models will help correct pronation and what degree of pronation correction is appropriate for you feet.

Tip 3. Good Arch Support & a Cushioned Sole

Your plantar fascia is a ligament that supports the longitudinal arch of your foot. If you are prone to developing Plantar Fasciitis it is likely that you have a weak arch and require extra support in your tennis shoes. This extra support will lessen the load on your plantar fascia and prevent excessive straining as you exercise. Getting a shoe with a cushioned sole will help protect your heel and diminish pain when experiencing a flare up of Plantar Faciitis.

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