Stretches to Prevent Achilles Injuries
Achilles tendon injuries, from the stiffness and swelling of tendinitis to more serious ruptures, are unfortunately very common among active individuals. Those in middle age or later years, when tendons aren’t quite as flexible as they used to be, are even more at risk.
Of course, flexibility can be improved! Certain stretches, practiced regularly, can help you reduce your risk of injury and can be especially valuable for those who are prone to Achilles pain. Better to prevent an injury in the first place than go through the pain, after all. Useful stretches to prevent Achilles tendon injuries include:
- Standing calf stretch. Stand facing a wall, about three feet away, that you can put your hands on for support. Put your left foot behind you, keeping the knee straight and heel flat on the ground. Then, lean forward, bending at the right knee. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch legs.
- Wall calf stretch. Standing facing a wall, just a foot or two away. Place the ball of one foot on the wall, keeping the heel on the ground. Gently lean forward, keeping the knees straight.
- Calf raises. Stand on the edge of a step or stair with your heels hanging off the edge. (Grab a rail for support if needed). Slowly raise the heel to stand on your tiptoes. Then, slowly lower your heels down below the edge of the stair, count to 10, and raise them to level again. Do a set of 10 or 15.
Of course, while stretching is a major component of most Achilles tendon prevention and treatment strategies, it isn’t the only part of your strategy. A comprehensive prevention plan may additionally include different shoes, custom orthotics, modifications to your overall exercise routine, or treatment of foot conditions such as flat feet.
That’s why it’s important to make an appointment with Dr. Jason Wilks of the Wilks Advanced Foot Care in Roseburg, Oregon for cases of stubborn pain that persist despite trying the above stretches. Our team has the sports injury expertise you need to get back on your feet quickly—including high-tech solutions such as laser therapy—so give us a call today at (541) 673-0742.