What is it?
Inflammation of the large tendon at the back of the leg that inserts into the heel. Often made worse by activities that stress the tendon such as running, prolonged walking, high-impact sports, and even standing for extended periods of time Should be treated to prevent weakening of the tendon or rupture.
What causes it?
High impact activities that put repeated strain on the tendon. Over pronation caused by flat feet. The arch collapses during impact activities such as walking, running, or standing and puts stress on the achilles tendon.
Signs and Symptoms:
Shooting, burning, or sharp pain in the ankle and back of heel
Prevention and Treatments:
Prescription custom orthotics alleviate over-pronation, provide arch support, and reduce impact and stress on the tendon. (see example below)
Heel cup or heel lift to help reduce impact and stress on the tendon Stretching and flexibility exercises; your Chiropodist can recommend effective exercises to benefit this area.
Applying an ice pack to the affected area, for 10 minutes three times per day.
Rest/decrease activity level; athletes reluctant to stop training should switch to low-impact exercise such as swimming. Applying an ice pack to the affected area, for 10 minutes three times per day.
Your Chiropodist may recommend the following exercises:
Place a towel on the floor. Curl the towel toward you, using only the toes of your injured foot. Resistance can be increased by placing a weight on the end of the towel. Perform this exercise 20 times.
Lift all your toes off the floor and, while keeping your heel on the floor and the outside four toes in the air, tap just the big toe to the floor. Next you will change the order and tap the outside four toes to the floor a number of times while keeping the big toe in the air. Start with 10 taps and work up to 50 taps per session.
Lean against a wall with your back knee locked. Press forward until a stretch is felt in your calf muscle, but do not stretch to the point of pain. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds. Repeat three times for each calf.
Lean against a wall. Gradually bend your back knee bent. until a stretch is felt in your Achilles tendon, but do not stretch to the point of pain. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds. Repeat three times for each foot.