Achilles tendon injury – Can you avoid it?

Can Achilles tendon injury be avoided?

Achilles tendon injuries are very difficult to treat due to their unique physiological structure and their ability to undergo huge changes in load and stresses.  The rehabilitation of the tendon can be time-consuming, particularly if left untreated for some time.  This will also be dependent on how the injury occurred, the age of the person, prior damage to the tendon, hormonal factors and the biomechanics associated with the individual.  A management plan that is adaptable to the temperamental nature of the Achilles tendon is needed to address these many different aspects.

In an effort to avoid developing an Achilles tendon injury in the first place, you would think there might be some preventative measures that could be taken.  Footwear, stretching and exercises, massage are all forms used by runners in an effort to stay injury free.  The question would be is there any evidence to truly support any one of these areas?Small_Achilles

In March, this year, a paper was published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in sport reviewing research on the preventative measures taken for tendon injuries.  This paper divided its findings into three categories:  stretch and exercise intervention, shoe adaptations, and other interventions.  There was no evidence for… click here to read the full article in ‘From the Sole’ June clinic newsletter.

By: Margot Manning (podiatrist, runner and coach)