The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine

Best Plantar Fasciitis Shoes To Consider Following Treatment

Posted by on Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

No one knows what precisely causes plantar fasciitis, although many risk factors have been identified. Tight calf muscles, high arches, obesity, and repetitive impact can all contribute to severe heel pain. Conventional therapy includes rest, ice, compression, elevation, stretching, and sometimes even physical therapy. The American Academy of Podiatric Sports Medicine (AAPSM) says “footwear analysis is critical” for the treatment of plantar fasciitis heel pain.

What Type of Plantar Fasciitis Shoes Are Recommended?

The AAPSM recommends that people suffering from plantar fasciitis get shoes that have:

  • Minimal 1-inch heel
  • Strong stable midfoot shank
  • Uninhibited forefoot flexibility

They advise against walking barefoot or wearing sandals, which do not provide enough structure for the foot. They list several well-known brands on their website, such as:

  • Asics (Gel Foundation Walker)
  • Brooks (Addiction Walker)
  • New Balance (926, 844, 811, 965, 659), and
  • Saucony (ProGrid, Grid Integrity).

Where Can I Buy Plantar Fasciitis Shoes?

FootSmart.com is a good place to find a wide variety of specialty shoes and insoles that cater to plantar fasciitis sufferers. They carry dozens of slings, braces, stretching aids, splints, wraps, and foot cushions to help with heel pain, in addition to the plantar fasciitis shoes themselves. Brands like Orthaheel, Spenco, Dr. Andrew Weil, and Vionic are popular products in this niche.

What Else Can Help With My Plantar Fasciitis Treatment?

There is much that a podiatrist can do to aid your plantar fasciitis treatment. In addition to assessing your footwear and making customized recommendations, we can also take a cast of your feet to make you a pair of custom orthotic inserts that go inside your shoes for added comfort and relief.

“Intervention with semi-rigid custom foot orthoses has been well proven in many prospective and retrospective studies showing successful outcomes in patients with plantar fascitis,” reports the AAPSM.

  • For instance, one 2002 study published in the Journal of Orthopedic Sports Physical Therapy found that custom semi-rigid foot orthotics “significantly reduced pain experienced during walking.”
  • According to a 2006 study published in Foot & Ankle International, patients who received custom orthotics experienced pain reduction of 62%, compared to patients who only used a night splint and reported pain reduction of 48%.
  • A 2008 study presented at the 94th Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting of the Radiological Society of North America found that 95% of plantar fasciitis patients who received steroid injections and custom orthotics were pain-free after three weeks and remained so for at least six months.

With custom orthotics, almost any shoe can be retrofitted for better comfort and a form that fits the unique sole of your foot. The upfront cost is about $500, but insurance often subsidizes the cost. A pair of well-made orthotics should last you a very long time, with minimal maintenance done every three years or so. Ask our NYC podiatric care office about these plantar fasciitis treatments today!

If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports MedicineDr. Josef J. GeldwertDr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.