Achilles Tendonitis

The Achilles tendon is the fibrous structure that attaches the calf muscle to the heel of your foot. It allows the calf muscle to pull your heel off the ground and push forward while walking, jogging, or running. Achilles tendonitis is an overuse injury that occurs when you don’t stretch your calf muscles properly.

Symptoms include a dull ache of pain in the back of the leg, just below the calf muscle, with pain that increases after activity, along with some diffuse swelling.

Treatment includes rest, ice, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, orthotics, taping to prevent further damage, and rehabilitation.

Prevention

  • Properly stretch and strengthen the muscles around the ankle.
  • Match the shoes to the activity: running shoes for running, basketball shoes for basketball.
  • Progress your workouts slowly, and don’t perform an activity beyond your comfort level.

Rehabilitation

  • Initially rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
  • Begin light calf stretching along with isometric strengthening exercises, then full muscle contraction with no movement of the joint.
  • Progress to full stretches and strengthening exercises for your ankle and knee.
  • Maintain calf flexibility and strength to avoid further injuries.
Content on this page is for informational purposes only. If injured, please consult a physician.

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