It's the latest in a long line of injuries that has forced Tiger Woods out of golf tournaments, but how can plantar fasciitis affect us humble hackers?
When Tiger Woods pulled out of the 2022 Hero World Challenge with plantar fasciitis, it got a lot of us heading to Google.
Also known as plantar heel pain – or PHP – it affects the plantar fascia, which is the tissue that connects and supports the heel bone and the arch of your foot.
It can cause severe pain in both the affected heel and bottom of the foot, particularly after periods of rest.
So what are the main plantar fasciitis causes?
Well, according to the NHS, it isn’t necessarily clear, but identified risk factors include long periods of standing, excessive walking or running, or a constant inward rolling of the foot. (Sound familiar, golfers?)
What is the treatment for plantar fasciitis?
Normally you’ll be able to treat yourself with plenty of rest, ice packs, keeping your foot elevated, and putting cushioned soles in your shoes, but the NHS does recommend you see your GP if the problem persists for more than two weeks.
From there, you may be referred to a physiotherapist or a podiatrist to help you get better.
In terms of how it affects us golfers, the Foot & Ankle Institute (I mean, who better to ask?) says our sport is “the perfect environment” for this type of stress injury because it’s an activity that “requires several hours of standing, walking, and twisting”.
Their website has several tips on how to help if you are suffering from plantar fasciitis, stretching, and placing a golf ball on the ground and gently rolling your foot on it.
But the best piece of advice is to invest in a new, more comfortable pair of golf shoes. Now while there are no specific plantar fasciitis golf shoes, spikeless golf shoes are the best way to go.
What is the recovery time?
While Tiger will no doubt be getting the best medical support possible, experts say plantar fasciitis can last anything between four weeks to six months. In some cases, surgery is necessary, resulting in a much faster recovery time.
Fortunately, with Woods stating he will still be playing in The Match and PNC Championship, it doesn’t sound like his case is too severe, meaning physical therapy is the likely remedy to get the 15-time-major winner back moving over the next month.