Achilles tendinopathy is an irritation to the Achilles tendon. This type of pain can affect both active and inactive individuals although it is most commonly seen in athletes. It is estimated that about 24% of athletes will suffer this condition at some point, while up to 50% of runners will experience some type of Achilles tendon pain.
The following list are factors that may predispose you to Achilles tendon pain
- Calf tightness
- Calf weakness
- Abnormal foot structure or mechanics
- Improper footwear
- A change in an exercise routine or sport activity
Signs and Symptoms
- Tenderness to palpation
- Pain and stiffness with walking
- Tightness in the calf
- Swelling at the back of the ankle
For an acute (recent) injury it is best to take some time to rest as well as ice your leg if you are experiencing pain. Then, ease back into your activities – jumping back in too fast is likely to reinjure the tendon.
For chronic injuries, you will need to work closely with a physical therapist to strengthen the Achilles and calf muscles. Physical therapists will also help determine when to return to activity and at what pace, so you avoid reinjuring yourself.
How Can Physical Therapy Help?
If you are experiencing pain in your Achilles a physical therapist can help! They can assess your body mechanics, strength, and flexibility to determine a treatment plan tailored to you. The treatment may include a combination of patient education, manual therapy, and exercise prescription. If you have any questions or concerns you would like to discuss with a physical therapist schedule a free screen with our office today!
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Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/achilles-tendinitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20369020