Whilst I talk about the various therapies and stretches for Plantar Fasciitis here, its worth tuning into the “length of stretch” debate.
If you look at Porter D, Barrill E, Oneacre K, May BD. The effects of duration and frequency of Achilles tendon stretching on dorsiflexion and outcome in painful heel syndrome: a randomized, blinded, control study. Foot Ankle Int 2002;23(7):619-624.
You’ll find two protocols coming neck and neck:
3 minute of stretching 3 x a day, or five sets, 20 seconds each, two times daily.
Either way, the take home message that a quick reluctant 10 second stretch when you can be bothered, isn’t enough. The study also determined that both sustained and intermittent Achilles tendon stretching exercises increase Achilles tendon flexibility. This increase in flexibility correlated with a decrease in pain!