Plantar fasciitis can be very painful, disrupt your free-flowing lifestyle, and make you feel aged and weak.
Here we have decided to look deeper into this condition and see how foot massagers can help you deal with this condition better.
But first, let’s understand what this condition is-
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar Fasciitis is a common foot injury where the thick band of tissue called “Plantar fascia” that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes, gets injured or inflamed. It is one of the most common causes of heel pain.
Plantar fasciitis usually causes stabbing pain the occurs in the morning with your first steps. The pain subsides as you get up and move but it might return after long periods of standing or when you stand up after sitting.
What are its common causes?
The plantar fascia is designed to absorb the high stress and pressure we exert on our feet. Sometimes, too much pressure can damage or tears the tissues of your plantar fascia. This causes the body to trigger its natural response to injury – inflammation. This inflammation results in heel pain and stiffness of plantar fasciitis.
Active men and women between 40 and 70 are at the highest risk of developing plantar fasciitis. It is slightly more common in women than men, especially pregnant women, because of their increased body weight.
Obese and overweight people are at a greater risk of developing this condition.
Long-distance runners have been found to develop plantar fascia problems and also people who have very active jobs that require them on their feet for extended periods such as factory workers, restaurant servers and construction workers, etc.
Structural foot problems such as ‘high arches’ or ‘low arches/flat feet’, are also a common cause for developing plantar fasciitis.
Contrary to popular belief, heel spurs don’t usually cause plantar fasciitis as doctors used to believe.
How is plantar fasciitis diagnosed?
A physical examination to check for tenderness in your foot and the exact location of the pain will be carried out by your physician. This will make sure that the pain isn’t the result of a different foot problem.
An X-ray or an MRI scan may be necessary to check that nothing else is causing your heel pain such as a bone fracture or some other ligament injury.
Your doctor will have to evaluate the strength of your muscles and the health of your nerves by checking:
✔️ Your reflexes
✔️ Your muscle tones
✔️ Your sense of touch and sight
✔️ Coordination and;
What are your treatment options?
After your physician is done with the initial diagnosis and imaging tests such as MRI and ultrasound, he will prescribe a treatment plan based on the severity of your condition.
More than 90% of patients with plantar fasciitis will improve within 10 months of starting simple treatment methods and so surgical methods are preserved for very severe cases.
Nonsurgical treatments include:
- Rest: Abstaining from athletic activities that involve your feet pounding on hard surfaces for some time as prescribed by your physician is the first step in reducing the pain.
- Ice: Roll your injured foot over a cold-water bottle or icepack for 20 minutes is effective for reducing pain. Can be done 3 to 4 times a day.
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication: Drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen may be prescribed by your doctor to reduce pain and inflammation.
- Exercise: Tight muscles in your feet and calves can aggravate plantar fasciitis. It is therefore important to stretch those areas to relieve the pain. Exercises may include calf stretches and plantar fascia stretch.
- Cortisone injections: Cortisone is a steroidal medication that is very powerful against inflammation. It can be injected into the plantar fascia.
- Supportive shoes and orthotics: Shoes with thick soles and extra padding can reduce pain with standing and walking. Soft silicone heel pads are an inexpensive and excellent item for elevating and cushioning your heel. You can also find custom made orthotics for your particular condition.
- Night splints: Sleeping with your feet pointed down relaxes the plantar fascia and this is one of the reasons for morning heel pain. A night splint can help stretch the plantar fascia while you sleep. Night splints can be difficult to sleep with but it is very effective.
- Physical therapy: Once your pain subsides, your doctor may suggest you work with a physical therapist on an exercise program that focuses on stretching your calf muscles and plantar fascia, along with some specialized ice treatments and massages.
- Extracorporeal shockwave therapy: High-energy shockwave impulses stimulate the healing process in your plantar fascia tissue. It is sometimes tried before surgery is considered.
Surgery is considered only after at least 1 year of aggressive nonsurgical treatments, and they include surgical procedures such as – Gastrocnemius recession; and Plantar Fascia release.
Can foot massagers help?
Recovery from Plantar Fasciitis involves that area of your foot becoming rigid and stiff.
Foot massage is particularly helpful for loosening the tendons, ligaments, and fascia that have become painfully tight over time through the recovery period, and will help to relax them back to their normal posture.
So, foot massagers can be helpful for those with plantar fasciitis.
Best Foot Massagers for Plantar Fasciitis in 2021
Foot massagers come in various types and with several functions.
Here we have cataloged a list of some of the most sought out foot massagers on Amazon.
1. RENPHO Foot Massager
This foot massager from Renpho is equipped with a rotation ball and rolling stick for delivering those deep kneading massages for soothing your plantar fascia and relieving pain. It also has a heating function for providing shiatsu styled foot massages.
This machine is made very easy to operate with its easy-to-use touch panel.
✔️ Multiple massage modes such as kneading and squeezing
✔️ Adjustable massage intensity: With 3 kneading intensity and 3 for squeeze intensity.
✔️ Washable and replaceable cloth cover: The foot covers are made with washable clothes, which can also be easily replaced.
✔️ Timer function: This device with a timer setting that can be set for 5-30 minutes with automatic shut off after 15 or 30 minutes.
2. Belmint - Shiatsu Foot Massager Machine
This Foot massager from Belmint also features the shiatsu function and it comes in a shiny and strong metallic build. It is also remotely operable with a handy controller with which you can tune up the heat intensity, set timer, tweak the pressure settings, etc.
✔️ Toe-access controls: The controllers on the face of this machine are specifically build for toe-control, so it is very easy to shift between modes.
✔️ Independent heaters ensure the footbeds meet your body temperature and erase tension, relieves stress, and muscle tightness.
✔️ Anti-slip rubber grip: The rubber bottom on this machine makes it very adaptable to all kinds of floors – carpeted, wooden, marbled office floor, wet bathroom tiles? It’s all safe and taken care of.
✔️ Breathable fabric allows your foot to enjoy a comfortable and deep massage.
3. Miko - Shiatsu Foot Massager
A sleek and shiny-metallic design, similar to the foot massager from Belmint, and with quick access button panels on the front.
It is remotely operable, and it is a good thing that Miko has supplied an additional remote controller in the box as well.
The box also contains a power adapter, welcome kit, and user manual.
✔️ Independent foot chambers for delivering an efficient massage every time.
✔️ Has all the classic Shiatsu features – Deep-kneading, Rolling, and heat functions.
✔️ 5 varying levels of intensity.
✔️ Overheating temperature control to prevent damage to the machine from extended periods of use.
✔️ Timer settings – With automatic 15-minute shut-off.
✔️ Independently selectable heat functions make it easy to tweak settings and only apply gentle warmth to your muscles.
4. Human Touch Reflex SOL Shiatsu Massager
Now, this is an all-encompassing leg massager. It is practically a massage chair for your feet with its big and bulky build that will target multiple pressure points on your feet to provide a thoroughly relaxing and deep massage with Shiatsu methods.
✔️ CirQlation technology ensures good blood circulation from the feet toward the core of the body.
✔️ Warm air technology ensures circulation with warm air that comforts your feet and calves with warm, flowing air to relieve tension and soreness.
✔️ Under-foot massage rollers will provide a robust reflexology massage to both the sole and heel.
✔️ Removable and washable easy sleeves make it very to keep it clean and fresh.
✔️ Adjustable tilt base: To help position your feet according to your varying needs.
5. Expansion wellness – Foot massager by KoolerThings
Similar to the previous product from the Human Touch store, this foot massager is also, in essence, a massage chair for your feet.
It has all the functions like kneading massage, vibration therapy, reflexology massage, and shiatsu massage, and it comes in a shiny silver case build.
Its easy-to-use control panel allows you to switch through its 3 massage modes, 3 heating levels, and 3 vibration levels very easily. And it has a 5-30-minute timer.
Its plantar scraping setting will involve multiple scroll wheel modes and different stimuli to massage your plantar fascia and surrounding areas.
Its calf kneading feature will allow 3D calf massage, and along with its calf scraping, you will enjoy the full experience of a live massage.
6. Cloud Massage Shiatsu Foot Massager Machine
This Foot massager is also an all-encompassing massager with the ability to treat various ailments such as – plantar fasciitis, diabetic neuropathy, heel spurs, swelling, recovery after a workout, etc.
It can target your feet, ankles, and calves one at a time, with its adjustable base that can position itself in multiple angles.
✔️ 5 core settings: Rolling massage, compression therapy, sway function for loosening joints, heat function for a shiatsu massage, and a quiet mode for a soothing and relaxing experience.
✔️ 3 levels of intensity: From gentle to strong, it has 3 distinct levels of intensity.
✔️ Flexible positioning: Its adjustable bar base allows to position this device in multiple angles for convenience and massaging certain other areas – calves.
7. Miko 360° Foot massager
This foot massager is also capable of massaging multiple areas of your legs such as – foot, calf, ankle, and heel. Its 360° rotating arm allows this device to be placed at various angles to target these specific parts of your legs.
✔️ 5 adjustable pressure settings and 3 massage modes, with vibration and deep-kneading function and shiatsu rolling.
✔️ 4 air pressure pads with removable and washable nylon foot pads
✔️ Wireless magnetic remote controller for easily operating the device
✔️ Strong targeted heat for providing the complete shiatsu experience
✔️ Pressure point accuracy: This makes this device very versatile to position and capable of targeting the pressure points you want.
✔️ Guaranteed customer satisfaction: This product is offered a refund or replacement if you are not satisfied with your purchase.
8. MedMassager Deep Tissue Foot and calf massager
This is one of the most powerful devices on this list with its 1000-3700 rpm delivered through an 11-speed controlled intensity.
It features a full-sized oscillating footpad with arch-bar and pressure points targeting the surface, for delivering a thoroughly therapeutic experience.
✔️ For calf pain and restless leg: tilted position. Simply let your calves rest on the treatment surface.
✔️ For heel and bone spurs: Upright position. Begin at the lowest setting then gradually bring up the speed.
✔️ For plantar fasciitis: upright position. Move your foot slowly over the arch bar in circles.
✔️ Insulin and peripheral nerve issues: upright position. Begin at lowest setting then gradually increase speed.
9. Nekteck Foot Massager
This device from Nekteck provides foot massages with its programmed footpads on the surface.
It is one of the most popular products on amazon with over 8,900 global ratings and acing a solid 4.4/5 stars on Amazon.
✔️ Versatile design with 6 massage heads and 19 rotating massager nodes.
✔️ Heating function: this device can provide shiatsu styled massages with its heating function.
✔️ Adjustable height: with 3 levels of adjustable height, you can work out your positioning.
✔️ Extremely portable and compact build
10. Naipo Foot Massager
A similar product to the previous one from nekteck, it also features footpads that deliver programmed massage functions on the surface.
The deep kneading massage function of this device is extremely useful to those with plantar fasciitis, for relieving those painful tensions in your feet.
✔️ Rolling and kneading massage with 18 deep-kneading nodes that target pressure points on your foot.
✔️ The heating function (104℉ – 113℉) will provide the soothing and relaxing effects of a shiatsu massage.
✔️ Centrally fixed resin massage ball will provide a 360° rotation massage by moving your feet around it.
✔️ Easy foot operation with the control panel
✔️ Breathable fabric allows the foot to breathe and makes it easy to clean the device.
Prevention > Cure! How to prevent Plantar Fasciitis from coming back
The resurgence of Plantar Fasciitis post-recovery is a likely occurrence, especially with improper care.
So, it is very important to keep these tips in mind following your recovery period.
These tips can also be helpful to prevent plantar fasciitis for healthy adults as well.
✔️ Maintain a healthy body weight: Chronic or extremely fast weight gain is one of the biggest causes for developing plantar fasciitis as your feet are unable to handle the stress and strain imposed by the sudden weight gain. Your heels, and ball of your foot, and your plantar fascia ligament puts a strain on your arches that can lead to inflammation, pain, and ultimately – plantar fasciitis.
✔️ Eat right: Eating healthy will ensure that you maintain good body weight and receive all the required nutrients for supporting your calf and feet muscles.
✔️ Always warm-up before exercises: It is very important to have a thorough and intense warm-up routine that includes stretching exercises before any physical activity, to prepare your muscles and prevent injuries.
✔️ Wear the right footwear: Wearing shoes that support your arch and heel is a great way to keep plantar fasciitis far away. Always wear shoes that fit properly and are the right size.
✔️ Don’t overstrain: Be vigilant about your limits and focus on signs of pain and exhaustion. Only increase your workout duration and intensity incrementally, to avoid overexerting your muscles and tendons.
✔️ Be physically active regularly: Do low-impact exercises like swimming or cycling. The key is to be active regularly. Even a brisk walk for 20 minutes daily, is better than intense exercises once or twice a week.
Foot massages can be very useful for dealing with plantar fasciitis and your recovery from the condition.
They can help loosen your muscles and tendons that become tight over recovery and helps promote blood flow and keep your plantar fascia active and healthy.
The various foot massagers listed here can help deliver a comfortable and convenient massage session at the comfort of your home.
They can be used daily, as a part of your lifestyle, for enjoying a soothing and relaxing foot massage at the end of a weary day.
These devices can help improve your mood and keep your feet healthy and free from injuries as well.
So, if you will really enjoy a thorough foot massage at home, we recommend you check these devices out.