I’m a Cyclist and Physical Therapist, and This is What I Do For That Puzzling Foot Pain

Follow my tips and tricks to get rid of that nagging Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling!

A young adult riding a road bike
Photo: TLBVelo Photography at tlbvelo.com

My patients and cycling friends frequently approach me with this question. Nagging foot and heel pain that doesn’t seem to want to go away. Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling can be a nuisance, not bad enough to stop doing things or see a doctor, but a real pain nonetheless. If you are a cyclist and a runner or on your feet a lot at work, it’s a more significant issue.


The annoyance also stems from the mysterious nature of the pain. You can’t pinpoint its cause—it appeared out of the blue. It is there some days and others it isn’t.


These shoes are comfortable one day, and your dogs barking the next day. You can make it through a ride or run some days with nothing. On others, you have to stop because it’s so bad. Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling will progress to a chronic concern.

Ask yourself the following questions about Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling.

  1. Is the pain primarily located on the bottom of your foot, and if you press firmly at the base of your heel, the pain can put you through the roof?


  1. Is the pain severe when you take your first step in the morning after sleeping all night or after sitting for a long time?


  1.  Does the pain slowly decrease as you move throughout the day but get worse as the day progresses the more you are on your feet?


  1. Have you ever been told you have flat feet or bunions or close relatives that do?


  1. Do your cycling shoes still have the flimsy insoles they came with when you bought them?


  1. Have you purchased new running shoes from a knowledgeable running shop within the past six months?


  1. Do you feel that your calf muscles are tight, and you aren’t the type that likes to stretch them out?  


If you answered “yes” to four or more of these questions, you might suffer from a chronic condition known as Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling. 

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling

Sharp pain felt along the bottom of the foot, most significant at the heel, is characteristic of Plantar Fasciitis. Repetitive irritation (inflammation) of the thick band of tissue connecting the heel bone to the toes meant to provide structure to the foot’s arch is often the cause. If left untreated, it can cause a calcific deposit at the heel known as a heel spur.


Plantar Fasciitis is difficult to treat and can become a troublesome chronic condition. Let’s face it. Life requires us to walk and stand. Running causes an irritating impact, and cycling shoes aren’t the most forgiving.

For a deeper dive into other possible causes, treatment, and prevention of lower leg pain, check out The ZOM virtual case study entitled “Pain in the Ankle and Foot When Cycling.”

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling case study announcement

Here are a few tips, tricks, and suggestions I offer my patients and cycling friends and have used myself.

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #1—Ice Massage

ice massage forPlantar Fasciitis When Cycling
  1. Put a small water bottle in the freezer, just in case.


  1. Sit in a chair with the frozen bottle under your painful foot.


  1. Slowly and firmly roll your foot over the ridges in the bottle paying particular attention to the areas of discomfort.


4. Perform the procedure for two minutes a few times a day until the pain disappears.

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #2—Stretch Those Calves

and Hamstrings

hamstring stretch forPlantar Fasciitis When Cycling

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #3—Roll Those Calves

foam rolling forPlantar Fasciitis When Cycling

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #4—Stretch Your Plantar Fascia

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #5—Basic Bike Fit Recommendations

A proper bike fit by a certified specialist is always a good idea, but until then, you can give this a try.

  1. Position your cleats so the ball of your foot is forward on the pedal.


  1. Raise your saddle to decrease heel and foot pressure.


  1. Address any leg length differences with shims.

Plantar Fasciitis When Cycling Tip #6—Replace Your Flimsy Inserts With Cycling-Specific Insoles (Footbeds)

If you are experiencing discomfort in your heel and foot while cycling and have exhausted all possible causes, sport-specific insoles are a potential solution.

cycling footbeds announcement

Check out The ZOM article entitled “One Yes Vote For Cycling-Specific Footbeds or Shoe Inserts” for more in-depth discussion and the scientific rationale behind their usage.


Foot and heel pain is a tiresome nuisance and can be challenging to treat. I hope these tips and tricks help get you back on your feet.

What do you find helps you?

What tricks do you use to get back on your feet? Comment below! Your fellow cyclists want to know.


For more ways to actively treat your cycling-related aches and pains, check out the Virtual Case Studies page of The ZOM!

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