The Achilles tendon, the largest and strongest tendon in the body, is responsible for connecting the calf muscles to the knee joint and the bones of the leg. Achilles tendon injuries can cause unbearable pain when the leg is moved while walking or running. However, there are a few ways to avoid Achilles tendon injury.
In order to avoid Achilles tendon injury, you must first learn what causes the injury and what an Achilles tendon symptom is. Here is what you need to know.
Inflexibility can cause injury
Inflexibility in the Achilles tendon can make it difficult to move the leg and calf muscles due to restricted movement of the ankle joint. This limits the range of motion of an athlete trying to run or to point his toes as the ankle is tight. Muscle tightness can lead to compensation of the movement and can be a risk factor for an injury. When experiencing muscle tightness or stiffness, it is advisable to get rid of the stiffness and inflexibility with the help of slow and gradual stretching movements before resuming physical activity to avoid Achilles tendon injury.
Over-exertion can cause injury
When athletes perform high-impact exercises for extended periods, it can damage the Achilles tendon and cause injuries. Performing intense repetitive exercises such as running can cause ruptures in the Achilles tendon and cause tendonitis. Athletes who change their exercise programs to increase the intensity of their workouts to levels their body is not prepared to handle can also suffer from Achilles tendon injuries.
To avoid Achilles tendon injury, the suitable exercise regime must be followed. Any changes made to the program must be only made after consultation with a qualified physical therapist. Increase the intensity of your workout session if it is approved by your physical therapist as your physical therapist is aware of what your body is equipped to tackle.
Ways to avoid Achilles tendon
Preventing an Achilles injury is easier than managing it. You can perform suitable exercises that have been proven effective in preventing Achilles tendon injuries. Simple stretching exercises of the muscles of the lower leg for 15-20 seconds thrice a day can help straighten out the tendon muscles and reduce inflexibility. Another technique for prevention is performing standing and seated calf raises. This builds strength in the Achilles tendon and the calf muscles as well. It is essential to perform both these exercises as each serves different functions in the tendon and calf muscles to avoid Achilles tendon.
With a combination of the right exercises and appropriate training by an experienced physical therapist, it is easy to ensure you never experience even a single Achilles tendon symptom. For athletes, it is imperative to begin with shorter and easier workouts which should be gradually increased to high-intensity and longer-duration workouts.