The most common complaints in this area are: Achilles injuries, chronic ankle sprains, and heel pain (more commonly known as plantar fasciitis). 

CAUSE
The cause of these problems are all different, depending on the mechanism of injury and the patients location of pain. In most cases the cause is due to a lack of the body’s muscles to properly absorb force. When performing your activity, weakened muscles will distribute their shock absorbing abilities elsewhere. Over time other tissues become stressed so much that they too break down causing pain.

Achilles injuries are caused by inflexibility, overuse, lack of strength, inability to absorb the forces applied and overpronation. The two calf muscles that join to become the Achilles tendon are under constant stress when a person walking, running, or just standing in one place. It is very easy for these muscles to become fatigued, weak, and eventually develop some kind of problem. If left untreated a simple tendonitis can progress to tendinosis, which is a chronic weakening and degeneration of the tendon usually leaving a bump on the tendon.  If this continues to worsen it is possible to completely rupture the tendon, which will require surgery and months or rehabilitation with little hope of returning to 100%.

Pain on the bottom of the foot is commonly called plantar fasciitis.  However, the problem is commonly misdiagnosed and treated incorrectly.  The Fascia is seldom the cause of pain. A thick fibrous band of tissue on the bottom of the foot called the Plantar Aponeurosis and two muscles underneath that called the quadratus plantae and flexor digitorum brevis are usually creating the problem that can begin as heel pain which is first noticed while getting out of bed, and can progress to development of heel spurs and constant pain at the heel.

Chronic sprains are caused by laxity and/or tightening of ligaments and tendons that support the ankle. Repeated injury can compound the problem if not treated correctly.

TREATMENT
Chiropractic adjusting of the spine, ankle and bones of the foot restore proper motion to those segments. The ARP machine (a one-of-a-kind electric current that forces muscles to lengthen)  restores resiliency to the muscle. This treatment must be followed by Active Release Techniques (ART). ART has been an incredible tool to quickly and permanently restore the ability of tissue to lengthen as it should. A problem that typically takes 6-12 months to treat can be quickly resolved in as little as 6 visits with ART. Rebuilding strength in the areas being treated is just as important as providing good support for the feet including: properly fitting shoes (cushioned, stability, or motion control), arch supports or custom orthotics.

Achilles injuries or lack of flexibility at the ankle can be greatly improved by adding the ARP (Accelerated Recovery and Performance) machine into the treatment plan. This machine will greatly increase the pain free range of motion of the muscles in the lower leg, thus taking a significant amount of pressure off the Achilles tendon and the plantar aponeurosis.