Give your Achilles Tendon a Bit of a Lift? Part 1

He may have died in the Greek Trojan wars, this tendon is named after him, it is the thickest and strongest tendon in the body, but still can be the cause of pain to many a Runner. You most likely know it as The Achilles Tendon. or the Calcaneal Tendon or the Tendo Calcaneus.

Over the years I have found myself treating many, Achilles Tendon Injures some, after surgery, but I am happy to see more people, getting treatment before the situation has deteriorated to the point that only option is that of surgery, I hope this information may help some of the runners to avoid some of theIt looks like the Summer is finally here and boy has it taken it’s time to arrive, two years with not very good weather , so now is the time to get out there and enjoy it. Equally important as the season change you must maintain adequate hydration. If you’re a Runner, Rider , Gardener or just wanting to take some exercise outdoors, you may be using muscles that you have not used for a while or you may need to make sure your muscles are in peak condition.

Problems that Occur with the Achilles Tendon.

The Achilles is the tendinous extension of 2 muscles in the lower leg: gastrocnemius and soleus. It also serves to attach the plantarisgastrocnemius (calf) and soleus muscles to the calcaneus (heel) bone, In humans, the tendon passes the  posterior of the leg to the ankle It is about 15 centimetres (6 in) long, and begins near the middle of the calf.

 The Achilles’ muscle reflex tests the integrity of the spinal root.  The tendon can receive a load stress 3.9 times body weight during walking and 7.7 times body weight when running. (Think about  that on your next run)  Achilles tendon ruptures are most likely to occur in sports requiring, sudden eccentric stretching, such as sprinting, also long runs pounding the pavement will do the job just as well.

Some of the Problems/ Injuries that occur

Insertion Tendonitis This is an inflammation at the point where the Achilles tendon inserts into the heel bone. When you have this problem you will have tenderness directly over the insertion of the Achilles tendon, which is commonly associated with calcium formation, or a bone spur forming just above the insertion point. You may also suffer a Retrocalcaneal bursitis; this is caused by movement-related irritation of the Retrocalcaneal bursa, the fluid-filled cushioning sac between the heel bone and the Achilles tendon. The bursa can become inflamed or thickened and stick to the tendon, because of overuse or repetitive loading. You will feel pain when squeezing the tendon itself or the space just in front of the tendon.Insertion Tendonitis This is an inflammation at the point where the Achilles tendon inserts into the heel bone. When you have this problem you will have tenderness directly over the insertion of the Achilles tendon, which is commonly associated with calcium formation, or a bone spur forming just above the insertion point. You may also suffer a Retrocalcaneal bursitis; this is caused by movement-related irritation of the Retrocalcaneal bursa, the fluid-filled cushioning sac between the heel bone and the Achilles tendon. The bursa can become inflamed or thickened and stick to the tendon, because of overuse or repetitive loading. You will feel pain when squeezing the tendon itself or the space just in front of the tendon.

I know that retrocalcaneal bursitis are  associated with Rheumatoid arthritis ,but in most occurrences in athletes, only  one side is involved so may  not be associated with a “Systemic disease ” Please get this checked by your GP if you have any doubts”.

Tendonitis also involves pain in front of the Achilles tendon and a bony enlargement of the heel bone, known as Haglund’s deformity, which is referred to as a ‘pump bump.’ “Most cases of Haglund’s deformity will occur in ladies who wear high-heeled shoes, but runners are also prone to this sort of injury.

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