Feet and ankle pain after exercise

Diagnosed in 2019 at age 49. Mild symptoms but slowly progressing. Taking requip 8 mg/day.

Recently (last 2 months) after exercise (e.g. a 30 minute run or 2h of badminton) I have pain in the arch of my feet and the back of my ankles. It feels like I have over-stretched the muscles. It’s not cramp. They are not visibly swollen. I haven’t overdone it - been doing that level of exercise for years. It means that for a day or so afterwards I am in pain walking and walk with a limp.

I raise my feet when watching TV and put Deep Heat on them. I also have a roller which I roll with my feet. None of which seem to make much difference.

Is it a Parkinson’s thing? Any ideas to stop the pain?

It is putting me off exercising, so I am keen to get this sorted.

Thanks :blush:

Hi Pcyc, I have just recently experienced the same thing after doing a lot of walking,only in my right foot which corresponds to the side with pd symptoms.I was wondering if it was linked to distonia and am hoping it will pass with a couple of days rest. It aches and hurts intensely when I flex the foot whilst walking forcing me to walk with a limp. Like you say it’s not cramp and is only a very mild ache when my leg is at rest.
I’m sorry I don’t have any answers for you but I do think it is pd related and will let you know if I find a way of relieving it. All the best Hemyock

Hello there

Try looking on You Tube for feldenkrais for the feet. There is a short course on there called “My happy healthy feet” Generally feldenkrais is a really useful movement therapy for pwp and works really well as you automatically relax as you work and discover relief from pain and increased range of movement. Just make you sure you go slowly and at first allow the movement to be really small. Message me if you want to know more or I would love t know how you get on.

Hi @Hemyock that’s really interesting, thank you for posting. Like you the pain is almost all in my Parkinson’s side (right), and like you I walk with a limp when it’s bad.

I have avoided running and badminton for a couple of weeks and it seems marginally better. I have been cycling but that is better because of the lack of impact.

This appears to support the theory that it is Parkinson’s related:

First drop down section:

Some people with Parkinson’s experience ankle or foot stiffness. It can affect your ankle joint and how easy it is to bend your foot up and down.

If you experience stiffness in your feet and legs, it can make a heel-to-toe pattern of walking more difficult. Rather than striking the ground with your heel and then pushing off with your toes, you may shuffle, or walk in a more flat-footed way.

I will try and remember to come back to this thread with any updates.

Hi @yogalady I looked that up and found it:

I gave it a go and found it quite relaxing. I was quite surprised because I normally hate people touching my feet…I had a session of reflexology once and hated every moment! This course seems very useful, I will go through it all. Thanks for pointing it out!


I am really pleased you are enjoying this. When I was working with pwp I used feldenkrais movement therapy extensively. I used to have a lady who did Morris Dancing and it definitely made a difference. The fact that it enables you to relax helps with the pain of rigidity and also can help with tremor and dyskenesia. See how you get on and just play around with it see what works for you and also can you pin point where you feet aren’t working properly and try to improve it.
I won’t suggest you try pulling out each toe if you don’t like touching your feet though!!

Me again, just watched this through and is nearly all toe pulling! You will find other feldenkrais exercises on you tube though for the whole of the feet and google feldenkrais for runners.

Hi again Pcyc,
Interesting what you showed about Parkinson’s and foot and ankle issues. I am also going to try the Feldenkrais exercises as suggested by yoga lady.
I have now come to the conclusion that Parkinson’s has affected my walking and foot movement to the extent that it has caused an injury to my right foot. Namely that my plantar fascia ligament has been strained resulting in pain to the instep when walking. I now have an appointment with a physiotherapist next Tuesday to confirm this and find a way of improving how I walk.
I the meantime cycling as you say is a great option to continue exercising without doing further damage. Having Parkinson’s is a learning curve and I need to start accepting that physically I can’t do everything I used to be able to, otherwise I will end up doing myself further injury. ie keeping fit within my limitations being better than not being able to exercise at all due to injury. Anyway I’m starting to ramble so keep well and I will keep you posted of any interesting facts I find out. Hemyock

An update from me: I have gone from 8 to 10mg/day of Requip with my Parkinson’s nurse’s permission. It’s definitely impact that makes the pain worse - I played 1 hour of badminton on Sunday and that made it significantly worse for a day after. Barring that it seems to be a little better each day. Still a bit of pain when I walk but I am going to avoid badminton and running for a couple of weeks in the hope that the pain disappears completely.

Just throwing in my thoughts.

I suffer from distonia while walking but it seemed to be ok while running. So after a long time away from jogging I really got into it again as my form of exercise. One day I felt my foot coming down a bit flatter on the treadmill and ended up with very painful ligament damage inside my ankle that has taken me a long time to recover from. Will try this feldenkrais but in the meantime I also tried silicone sleeves that go between my toes and spread them out. I’ve really found they help with my walking - not cured but better. (search “YogaMedic toe separator” although a few other options out there). I do have to chose my shoes as they don’t fit inside all of them. I also don’t use them all the time but walking can be better even without them. It’s like retraining my toes/brain. I’m sure it won’t work for all, but something else to try…

An update from me (I started this thread). I changed medication from Requip to Co-Careldopa in May 2022. My feet and ankle pain stopped within 2 weeks and has not returned. I am 100% convinced it was Requip causing my issues.