The Achilles tendon or heel cord is the largest tendon in the body, stretching from the calcaneus (back of the heel) to the calf muscles. The calf is comprised of two 2 muscles; Gastrocnemius originates on the medial and lateral condyles of the femur while the Soleus are distal originating on the tibia and fibula. The gastrocnemius has two heads that proximally attach to the tibia and fibula causing the posterior ascetics of the calf. The Soleus is found underneath; is a very powerful muscle and is involved in standing and walking. These two muscles insert in the Achilles Tendon and acts as a functional unit.
So, the calf is comprised of two muscles, one of which crosses two joints. The soleus crosses one and generates plantar flection (point’s toes towards the floor) while the gastrocnemius crosses two causing knee flexion (lifting lower leg) and plantar flexion. It’s easy to see how this unit is important in standing and walking. The mechanics of walking requires that the ankle pivots forward as the body falls forward. This pulls the tendon while the calf first drives the toes into the ground and then lifts it up. In doing so and always being active it’s understandable that this tendon will undergo some wear and tear.
Usually the first warning sign of an inflamed Achilles tendon is pain found underneath the calf near to the back of the heel. It may feel like a burning pain or stiffness in this area. This is a very common injury that is caused by a swelled, slightly torn or ruptured tendon.
- Over working
- Increased physical activity level too fast
- Wearing high heelsà stretching tendons
- Flat feet/ fallen arches à This means when you take a step the arches collapse because of the impact stretching the tendon and muscles
- Leg muscles/tendons are too tight
- And more…
More commonly found in people in these activities:
- And more…
Achilles tendon injuries tend to happen as you start moving suddenly more so lifting or pushing off your foot rather than landing on it. An example of it happening is when a sprinter is about to start racing and the surge of force snaps it.
Whether you have Achilles tendinitis or not the following techniques will help in both prevention and rehabilitation getting you back to your optimal health.
There are many ways to reduce the pain and eventually stopping it. Like reaching any goal it’s a combination of consistency, dedication and doing the best possible actions. In alliance with anti-inflammatory foods (blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes, fatty fish, olive oil etc.) the tendon must be stretched.
Posturenomic Slant Board Stretches