Dr. Meredith Warner Discusses Plantar Fasciitis & How The Healing Sole Can Help Manage Heel Pain
Posted on Dec 07, 2016

Why Does Plantar Fasciitis Affect Someone?

Traditionally, plantar fasciitis is thought to be due to abnormal biomechanics, or too much load on the foot. There are studies to support higher incidence in ‘flat feet,’ but also in ‘high arches.’ There is information supporting the occurrence in runners, and also in the obese.

Basically, scientists don’t really understand the true etiology of heel pain. However, more and more information is leading researchers to look at the levels of chronic inflammation, advanced glycation end products, and oxidative stress in the tissues.


Researchers looking at professional baseball players found essentially the same incidence of heel pain in the ‘over-pronator’ group versus the ‘normal’ group. So, alignment is likely not the culprit.

Improper Arch?

A ‘flat foot’ is thought to have too much motion. A ‘high-arched foot’ is thought to be too stiff. In both cases, abnormal stress might be placed on the foot during use. There must be a Goldilocks foot position out there, but no one has defined it.

Muscle Fatigue?

Researchers have also attributed plantar fasciitis to foot muscle fatigue. This is intriguing and more work should be done. If the basic core of the foot is weak, then more stress will be placed on the non-muscle stabilizers.

Obviously, no one really knows why this happens, and therefore how can anyone be sure of the ‘best’ treatment. I devised The Healing Sole to incorporate multiple known methods that reduce foot pain and still allow for the human immune system to do what it does best, to heal damaged and painful tissues. The foot is basically a biological machine and needs maintenance. The Healing Sole allows for this to occur at the convenience of one’s own life and schedule.

What Does The Plantar Fascia Do?

The plantar fascia (PF) has been called the “tie-rod” to the arch of the foot. Others describe a truss-like structure of the foot with the PF being the base. In most conceptual frameworks of the foot, the PF is under enormous tensile loads during use. During forward motion, when the large toe bends upward, it is tightened even more with the ‘windlass mechanism’.

The tensile forces across the fascia might be the source of the dreaded ‘heel spur’. This is a horizontal spur of bone from the calcaneal attachment site of the plantar fascia that occurs in some individuals. It is thought to be a response to Wolff’s Law which states that the body will produce bone in response to mechanical load/stress. Again, there is literature to support the heel spur as the source of pain and literature to disparage that thought.

Plantar Fasciitis & The Rest Of The Body

Regarding the remaining kinetic chain, there is agreement that overall conditioning of the hip and knee muscles helps to reduce plantar fasciitis symptoms. Hip muscles are particularly important. Likewise, the overall flexibility of the gastrocnemius-soleus-Achilles complex is very important for this condition and for all foot pain.

The Healing Sole’s Mechanics To Relieve Plantar Fasciitis Heel Pain

The Healing Sole is designed to promote natural healing and to assist in foot strength development. It is not necessary to change the alignment of the foot for the purposes of this first-line option in the course of your journey to relieve PF heel pain. Rather, The Healing Sole simply cushions the area of the most stress on the aponeurotic tissue of the fascia and reduces stress across the entire length of it by way of the curved (rocker) sole.

Additionally, the low-profile wide arch supports the attachment point of the plantar fascia. That is, the attachments on each toe are rested by virtue of our proprietary arch-support design. This is in combination with the rocker-sole and the stress on the plantar fascia both proximally and distally is thought to be dissipated.

For those without any great toe pathology, we do offer a version with a small elevation* to start the windlass mechanism. However, we also offer the Palmer and this is as the elevation is certainly not mandatory to how this shoe works, it is simply another option.

I think that this flip flop is a wonderful device to try at home as a first-line way to start to improve your foot strength and also to employ known methods of pain reduction for foot pain.

The Healing Sole As A First-Line Defense Against Plantar Fasciitis

As with all treatments, this will not work for everyone. During the clinical trial, 80% of participants experienced relief with The Healing Sole. However, unlike with an injection, surgery, therapy, or medication, even if it does not result in 100% pain relief, you will still have a shoe designed to promote excellent foot health.

My clinics are filled with people who were incorrectly diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. It is important to remember this as you seek self-care. Often, many people with heel pain do not even have true plantar fasciitis, and most treatments that only target that malady will fail.

An office visit will be at least a co-pay. For those with high deductible plans it will range from $150 – 500. Custom inserts are usually $500. Films and MRIs are more. Injections are about $200 on average. However, again, the individual is left with nothing tangible after these sorts of treatments and there is no guarantee and no way to receive a refund if your injection doesn’t work. I wanted to offer the larger community a low-cost and good alternative for the symptom management of foot pain. There is a chance that someone might still require more advanced therapeutics, but this is a good first-line defense, a good way to promote overall foot health, a good way to begin strengthening the foot and calf, and an easy device to use when needed and store for later use.