Achilles Pain Slowing You Down?
Question from one of our patients yesterday… Why does my Achilles’ pain keep coming back? This is a pretty common complaint we see here especially this time of the year as the weather warms and more people get outside to run.
A little anatomy lesson first to understand the Achilles tendon. The Achilles tendon sits at the back of your heel and is also the thickest tendon in your body. It is one of the most common area for overuse injury and occurs at a higher rate in older athletes.
Many times the pain goes away with a little rest, ice/heat but most often than not, the pain returns when the person starts their activity again. Our patient had some other physical therapy treatment in the past, 1 or 2 sessions here and there to ease the pain in his tendon. It worked for a while however shortly after the pain returned and he felt like he was back to square 1.
The reason for the pain coming back and the reason that so many injuries reoccur is that the ROOT cause was never identified and the patient was only getting his symptoms treated.
In this case it was his foot position that was causing his Achilles irritation. He actually had very tight calf muscles and pronated (rolled his foot inward) when he walked and ran.
This foot position caused his Achilles to be on constant tension and when he increased his mileage his Achilles became painful. A good analogy is you need a strong foundation to support your house. Same holds true with your body!
So, we were able to identify his foot problems during a comprehensive evaluation and developed a treatment plan to reduce his pain and increase his flexibility and strength. We also worked on drills to improve his running mechanics to ensure he can run without fear of this coming back again.
Make sure to have YOUR root cause identified so that you can get back to all activities comfortably and worry free!