Stretch: Plantar fascia and calf

Picture of a stretching exercise for the plantar fascia and calf

Stretching the plantar fascia and calf muscles can increase flexibility and decrease heel pain. You can do this exercise several times each day and before and after activity.

  • Stand on a step as shown above. Be sure to hold on to the banister.
  • Slowly let your heels down over the edge of the step as you relax your calf muscles. You should feel a gentle stretch across the bottom of your foot and up the back of your leg to your knee.
  • Hold the stretch about 15 to 30 seconds, then tighten your calf muscle a little to bring your heel back up to the level of the step. Repeat 2 to 4 times.

Last Updated: July 16, 2009

Author: Shannon Erstad, MBA/MPH

Medical Review: William M. Green, MD - Emergency Medicine & Barry L. Scurran, DPM - Podiatric Surgery

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