Home The Book Dr Articles Products Message Boards Journal Articles Search Our Surveys Surgery ESWT Dr Messages Find Good Drs video

BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Posted by Donald L on 6/07/04 at 10:13 (152215)

I am 58 years old, moderately overweight and my New Year's resolution fitness program to walk at least 15 miles/week backfired due to crappy shoes. I have fairly severe PF in my right foot. I stopped the 5 mile walks but circumstances and work keep me on my feet a fair amount -- with sometimes painful results. I wear a night boot, take ibuprofen and do stretches. Yesterday I rode my bike 20 miles, stopping to stretch a couple of times and this morning I had almost no pain. The last time I did this was similar. My bike riding is fairly laid back and I do not stand up while riding. My bike has front and rear suspension so absorbs curb impacts etc. well. I'd sure like to keep this up if it is, at least, NOT harmful.

When I did a google search for bicycling and PF there were discussions on cycling boards about cycling CAUSING PF, but elseswhere I saw recommendations to substitute cycling for walking or running.

I was told after left knee surgical repair NEVER to run or jump and I happily do neither.

Thanks in advance for any and all input.

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Pete R on 6/07/04 at 14:41 (152252)

Had pf / arch pain for 3 years. Had new bike last week and pain is now far worse than before after 3 5 mile rides in a few days. Maybe cos I stood when going up inclines, although cycling never usually affects me. I think care is needed and try to keep middle of the foot on pedals not just the ball.

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

RACHAEL T. on 6/07/04 at 22:46 (152321)

I think bike riding has helped my pf - but I do use my foot on the pedal with the arch or middle of the foot placed on the pedal & I never stand up & bike. I think it helped me alot - improving circulation & restoring general well being emotionally. Ride safely & cautiously w/ regard to your feet & judge your mileage as your feet tell you to do short or longer distances!

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Ed Davis, DPM on 6/08/04 at 14:13 (152425)

Bike riding is usually not a big problem but you need to push the pedals further back on the foot (less leverage) as using the forefoot puts too much strain on the plantar fascia. Do so with shoes with a rigid shank.

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Donald L. on 6/08/04 at 16:32 (152443)

My steel toed work boots are very well cushioned and my feet seem to like them best -- they do have a steel shank. I got into this mess when I thought there had to be better shoes out there. Ironically, it was high-dollar 'walking' shoes from the area runner's store that got me into trouble!

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Jill H. on 6/09/04 at 09:18 (152511)

I currently am wearing a soft cast. I am going crazy by not doing any aerobic exercise for 5 months. I have tried the exercise bike a few times and it always made my PF worse. I also tried swimming. Two questins - is it at all possible to ride a statinary bike with a soft cast? Or if I would take off the cast and try to place the pedal on my heel, do you think that would make a difference?

Re: BIke riding -- good or bad for PF? Dr. Ed?

Kristie on 6/11/04 at 16:44 (152778)

Jill, I also can't excersise to much because of recent surgery. I bought a Pilates tape from Amazon.com. Great workout becasue everything it done on your back.