heel pain

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by tennislady, Oct 26, 2004.

  1. tennislady

    tennislady New User

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    I have been playing tennis for over 20 years, and for last year have been getting lots of pain in rt. heel, especially first thing in morning. It seems to be getting worse lately, is this plantar fascitis? It is starting to bother me, not so much during matches, but right after now. What can you do about it? Thank you in advance. I do wish this board had a few more tennis nuts who are women.
     
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  2. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    could be plantar or could be achilles tendonitis...if located in your achilles, i can help you with that. typically tendonitis of that type is stiffest in the morning and then gets better as the day progresses..it's because that area gets the least amount of bloodflow especially after being stationary whilst asleep. i've never been troubled w. plantar, but maybe someone else can jump in of that is the prob. if you can be more specific about where in your heel the problem is, maybe we can help....ed (not a woman):)
     
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  3. sportsfan10

    sportsfan10 New User

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    If the pain is in the bottom of your foot near the heel, chances are it is plantar fasciitis. If on the back of the heel, could be achilles tendonitis. With either one, be careful. I lost most of the past year due to an acute case of plantar fasciitis. If this is what you have, you should first make sure that you are wearing good shoes, try some over the counter arch supports and/or try taping your arch, stretch the area several times a day, and ice after playing. Before you get out of bed in the morning, stretch the affected area and massage it to get the blood flowing. The pain first thing in the morning with plantar fasciitis comes from your foot starting to heal in the relaxed (sleeping) position and then tearing the healing when you start to flex the foot in the AM. You can get a lot of useful information on stretching, taping, etc. at www. heelspurs. com. You might also do a search of this forum as this issue has come up a few times before.

    If the above measures don't fix the problem, you should see a good orthopedic as you might need a night splint or other action. I ended up having a procedure called an Ossatron (a shock wave treatment similar to what they use to break up kidney stones) that helped get me back on the court although I am still not 100%.

    Sorry for the long post. Hope it is helpful and good luck.
     
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  4. tennislady

    tennislady New User

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    The pain is not on bottom of foot, more on both sides of heel. It hurts to apply pressure on sides and back of heel as well. Wow, another place to ice. I have tried arch supports before but they make my feet ache. Maybe I have not tried them long enough. I will try the stretching and icing. I always buy good shoes specific for tennis. I hope this goes away. Thanks for the replies.
     
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  5. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    you are saying that the actual achilles is tender to the touch? if so, you have achilles tendonitis, and i would definitely avoid stretching..that is one of the worst things to do as you might actually be stressing it by the stretching rather than helping. you can certainly stretch other uninjured body parts before and after play, but i would avoid stretching the achilles....play some mini tennis as your warm up instead if you know what that is. i had achilles tendonitis chronically for almost 10 years and finally found a way to banish it..i wrote something for another person(who never thanked me) :) some while ago..i may have kept it and if you are interested and it is your achilles that indeed hurts, i will be happy to post for you. my tendonitis was higher up in the tendon and i had it in both.
     
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  6. tennislady

    tennislady New User

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    Well, I am not sure what it is. All I know is I have no pain on bottom of foot. Pain is about 2 inches up from bottom on both sides, midway between ankle and bottom. I have checked out website on heelspurs, and they do stress ice, taping and strectching. Have done of these as yet, but was thinking of starting with a stretching and icing program. Hope this is on right track if not. What to do? Would appreciate your input.
     
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  7. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    hi..here is what i sent to someone re achilles tendonitis some while ago...the vioxx no longer applies of course :). hope this helps
    <snip>Ruben,
    Yes....it is very frustrating. it got to the point where I would play a couple times in a week and then not be able to play for a month or more..i would come out again after rest and rehab and the same thing..over and over again.
    Here is the combination of things that finally worked for me.......................
    -Most important i think are to stop your achilles from hyper extending. You can do this by taking your tennis shoe inserts to a good shoemaker and have them build in lifts for the heel into your inserts. this is pretty cheap. they should be made of something firm and be 3/8" thick. my guy used a firm kind of felt. this will prevent your achilles from hyperextending vertically. if your ankles pronate, this will not relieve the lateral stress on your achilles. i did this for a while and it kept me on court, but didnt cure the problem. then i discovered custom orthotics.they are rigid material and i had them build in lifts into these too..that kept my achilles from hyperextending laterally because my ankles pronate inwardly. these orthotics keep the achilles from hyperextending both vertically and laterally. they were about 150 bucks but were the most instrumental thing in curing my problem i think. a word of caution though....use them slowly at first.....because everything lines up properly, you may start tearing tissue around the achilles and even up to the calf because your body isnt used to having your feet land properly when you run. there is a definite adjustment period. i have learned that people with high arches like mine and ankles that pronate, that are athletic quite usually get this problem.
    -Stretching...I really dont suggest much stretching for this unless very gentle. I was doing heel drops and other forms of stretching and was actually tearing tissue in the achilles by stretching
    -Isolate the move(s) that cause the problem and see if you can change some things. For me it was that first big push off coming to the net after my serve. So i dont play so much serve/volley these days
    -Pills......non steroidal anti inflammatories. alleve rather than advil. if you can hook up a full perscription of Vioxx or the newer one that would really help you get rid of the inflammation and kick start your rehab.
    -Ice - Absolutely ice down as soon as you walk off the court religiously
    -Go slowly - start coming back slowly. dont play on consecutive days at first and avoid playing matches until you are almost healed. in the heat of battle, i found i would really try and push off instinctively and go for balls that i wouldnt do if just doing drills or having a hit and i would retear tissue that i spent all the effort trying to restore. the achilles is the largest tendon in the body and the farthest away from the heart, so it really doesnt get much blood flow down there and it takes so much longer to heal because of that
    -Heat - I am lucky enough to have a hot tub and the hot water after the ice helped to increase blood flow a little i think? This doesnt seem as important
    -Hydration. Get yourself well hydrated which is just a good policy for many reasons.
    Hope this is of help. I came upon this combo after trying since 1995 to get rid of this condition. I love tennis and wasnt willing to stop playing. The single most impt thing to get rid of this problem in my opinion are the orthotics. If i would have had these years ago, i dont think i would have ever had this problem to begin with. The place i got my orthotics from is www.customshoeinserts.com they did a great job and totally customized mine and you get to work with a real doctor (Dr Jeff Wilson). he even contacted me directly. if you work with him, pls use my name and maybe he will take care of me if i ever need other orthotics.
    I am happy to pass this info along because i know how frustrating it is to have this condition. Surgery options just arent appealing. They cut the achilles lengthwise and scrape out the bad stuff and put it back together and then you have the rehab and it really doesnt solve the problem like the orthotics do and additionally, there are no promises w. the surgery.
    Let me know how this works out for you..regards,
    <end>
     
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  8. tennislady

    tennislady New User

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    thanks for the reply. I do actually have orthotics, I payed around $3oo. for them from a podiatrist a few years ago. But they made my feel ache so much, I could not concentrate and play with them in my shoes. I will try them out for short periods and see if this helps. I play on league, play 4 times a week, so not much time off. So far I have played through it, and I actually am pretty good on the court pain wise. It is aggravated afterwards. I take Advil routinely when I play. Thanks again. Information is the key.
     
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  9. Power Game

    Power Game Professional

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    Play with your orthotics for a whole day, I will feel wierd and may even hurt. But after that they will feel great.
     
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  10. paulfreda

    paulfreda Hall of Fame

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    Plantar Fasciitis

    I suggest curing the problem rather than just treating it.
    It gets old sticking your feet in icewater after you play,
    yet still not being able to walk in the morning.

    Please see my comments on PF here .....

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/viewtopic.php?t=19294

    It is a nasty problem to deal with, I know.
    Good luck.
     
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  11. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    you should be able to wear well made orthotics for the entire day with no discomfort..in fact, they should feel better than not wearing them not only for your feet, but your knees and lower back. running in them is a different story and that takes some slow adjustment
     
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  12. David Valencia

    David Valencia New User

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    tennislady,

    I have the same problem and was diagnosed with Achilles bursitis. I had a cortisone shot directly into the heel and laid off playing for a month. I just stareted playing again and it seems better.

    I also had problems with my calf cramping in the same leg. Did you?

    David
     
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  13. Marius_Hancu

    Marius_Hancu G.O.A.T.

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    Pls check my posting here in this thread:
    Heel soreness
    The shoes could be a very important contributing factor. Also, use Spenco orthotic supports (full or just heel).
     
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  14. PattyS

    PattyS Guest

    To Tennis Lady:
    I recently had a partial tear in my achilles tendon. It started with cramps in my calf which caused a tightening in the tendon. I tore the tendon near the heal. I would go to an orthopedic surgeon so that a complete examination will be done of the whole tendon. I went to a podiatrist and he "made" orthotics for me. I stepped into a box of foam. That NEVER fixes the problem. If you can't wear your orthotics for more than a couple of hours, either their wasn't a proper initial break-in time if they were corrective orthotics, or they weren't made correctly. orthotics should be casted to your feet with plaster and the orthotics made from the castings. A great company for those is STRIDE. They have a web-site. Or a quick temporary help is a OTC orthotic called SuperFeet. You can get them in most sports stores. Get the Green ones for your sneakers. They were a great help while I was waiting for my custom orthotics. I hope this helps you with your problem. As a person who has had perpetual foot problems all her life, These are the measures that have finally worked. :D
     
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  15. Marius_Hancu

    Marius_Hancu G.O.A.T.

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    #15

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