Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

Raise a little heel

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
Get posts in your inbox:
Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

Raise a little heel 🎶 raise a little heel 🎶 raise a little heel! If you don’t like what you got, why don’t you change it? If you know there’s something wrong why don’t you right it?

~ Trooper, from the classic song, “Raise a Little Heel”

I’ve packed this website with little whimsical flourishes like that (so many that I routinely forget them and then have a good chuckle when I stumble across them again). This one kicks off a section of my plantar fasciitis book about heel raises.

And why would one raise a little heel? Why do heel drops? (Standing on an edge and lowering your heel below your toes and then lifting up again.) Because eccentric or “braking” contractions are potentially therapeutic. And why is that? Yeah, that’s trickier to splain … but see my eccentric contraction article, which got a geeky update yesterday about titin’s likely role in eccentric contractions, and two types of isometric contraction (clenching). Eccentric contractions are weird and scientifically fascinating, so of course I had to write about them.