Preventing Achilles Tendinopathy
December 1, 2022 12:17 pm / Category: Rausch Physical Therapy
Dr. Daniel Lozano — Dana Point
Whether you are a long-time competitive runner or a recreational athlete who enjoys participating in the occasional marathon, preparing your body for the activity is always vital. There are several methods of warming up to help muscles and tendons prepare — it is possible to overlook some crucial stretches, which can lead to unnecessary pain and inflammation. Here is an example of this — and how to mitigate it.
As a seasoned runner training for a twenty-six-mile race, there can be a few bumps along the way. There is always a potential for injury or setbacks with a lack of preparation or strengthening beforehand. Running is a single-leg endurance activity requiring trunk, hip, knee, and ankle strength and stability. However, we often “push through the pain” because we believe it is temporary. Our downfall is that we do not take the extra time in the day to perform our stretching or strengthening program — which will increase our longevity of doing the things we love.
One of the easiest ways to prevent Achilles Tendinopathy from occurring is to maintain our ankle range of motion. Lacking adequate ankle motion puts our Achilles under too much stress.
This syndrome is an overuse issue; the more we fall into the trap of overusing our Achilles tendon, inflammation will occur. With proper warm-up and stretching of our ankles, we can begin traveling the road to prevent this chronic issue.
Another crucial factor in avoiding ankle pain is providing the body with the proper ankle stability. Several muscle imbalances can occur in our lower leg and foot area. Our Achilles can undergo unnecessary stress when our foot arch collapses during exercise. The muscles often neglected in the foot and lower legs are our intrinsic foot muscles and our tibialis posterior. Performing ankle mobility and lower leg strengthening can prepare our Achilles for activities with high loads.
Daniel’s Ankle Warm-Up
- Gastrocnemius and Soleus stretch
This will stretch the muscle that is attached to the Achilles tendon.
- Dorsiflexion Mobilization
Improving the ankle joint motion will help attain proper dorsiflexion.
- Arch Raises
This will activate your intrinsic foot muscles and provide arch support.
- Heel raises with a ball in between ankles
Strengthening the tibialis posterior in weight-bearing is a good progression for the foot arch.
Regardless of your fitness, Rausch PT is here to help you meet your goals with personalized treatments, plans, and professional guidance. Get in touch with us today to learn more at 949-276-5401 or meet us on our Facebook page.