Will Running Make Heel Spurs Worse

As an avid runner, I’ve often wondered about the impact of running on heel spurs. Heel spurs, also known as calcaneal spurs, are bony protrusions that develop on the heel bone. They can cause intense pain and discomfort, especially during physical activities like running. In this article, I’ll delve into the question: will running make heel spurs worse?

Understanding Heel Spurs

Heel spurs are often associated with plantar fasciitis, a common condition that involves inflammation of the band of tissue (plantar fascia) connecting the heel bone to the toes. The spurs themselves are not the direct source of pain, but they can aggravate the surrounding soft tissue, leading to discomfort and inflammation.

The Impact of Running

Running, with its repetitive impact on the feet, can indeed exacerbate heel spurs. The constant pounding can place additional stress on the heel bone, potentially causing the spurs to press further into the soft tissue. This, in turn, can lead to heightened pain and inflammation.

Factors to Consider

It’s important to note that the severity of heel spurs and the individual’s running biomechanics play a significant role. Factors such as running form, footwear, running surface, and mileage can all contribute to the impact that running has on heel spurs.

Managing Heel Spurs as a Runner

While the thought of worsening heel spurs can be daunting for runners, there are steps that can be taken to mitigate the impact. Investing in proper footwear with ample cushioning and support can help reduce the stress placed on the heel. Additionally, incorporating stretching and strengthening exercises for the calves and plantar fascia can aid in alleviating discomfort.

Seeking Professional Guidance

If you’re a runner dealing with heel spurs, consulting a healthcare professional or a podiatrist is crucial. They can provide personalized advice and treatment options based on the severity of the spurs and your running routine.


Ultimately, while running may pose challenges for individuals with heel spurs, it’s not an outright prohibition. With proper precautions, including listening to your body, seeking professional guidance, and adjusting your running routine as necessary, it’s possible to continue enjoying the sport while managing this condition.