Achilles Tendonitis

What is it?

Achilles tendinopathy / tendinitis is one of the most common overuse injuries that causes pain, swelling, stiffness and weakness of the Achilles tendon.

Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body which connects the calf muscle at the back of the lower leg to the heel bone.

It’s commonly seen in runners, ballet dancers or athletes whose sports include repetitive jumping movements.

People suffering with achilles tendinopathy usually experience pain along the mid portion and / or insertional area of the tendon at the back of the heel bone.

Cause:

  • Poor fitting shoes
  • Poor technique and biomechanics
  • Overuse / weakness in particular muscle group
  • Poor flexibility
  • Difference in training surface
  • Inefficient recovery period
  • Changes in training programme such as sudden increase in training intensity

Treatment options:

The conservative treatment options depend on the severity of the injury. Options include:

  1. Rest / activity modification – to allow injured tissue sufficient amount of recovery period / time.
  2. Address contributing biomechanical factors via orthotics / footwear modifications.
  3. Physical therapy – home stretch and strengthening program is recommended to improve the tendon’s tolerance to load. Any improper training technique errors should also be corrected.
  4. Manual therapy including myofascial release joint mobilisation or taping are recommended to improve the range and quality of movement.
  5. Adjunct therapy such as low level laser therapy and shockwave therapy.
  6. Conservative therapy should be instigated for 3-6 months before considering other therapy such as injection therapy or surgery.

We’ll find a solution that suits you

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We are committed to solving the problem rather than offering a quick fix. In addition to treatment we’ll provide advice on how you can make small adjustments to reduce your pain, minimise the risk of injury and improve your quality of life.