Stimulate Achilles Tendon Repair with these Exercises
Achilles Tendon Repair Exercises
5 minutes Twice a day
That’s all you need to do to Stimulate Achilles Tendon Repair and get rid of your Achilles pain!
Start with this exercise – the Best and Most Effective One
Jump Directly To:-Achilles Tendonitis – Your Top 10 Questions Answered
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Read on for progressions and to find out why the exercise works.
The role of Rehab Exercises is to stimulate repair of injured tissue and create a strong and healthy scar. These exercises for the Achilles Tendon Repair apply equally to tears and strains of the Gastrocnemius muscle and the Soleus muscle.
Types of Muscle Contraction
There are 3 basic types of muscle contraction
- isometric contraction – where there is no shortening or lengthening of the musle fibres under load (static)
- concentric contraction – there is shortening of the muscle fibres under load
- eccentric contraction – there is a lengthening of the muscle fibres under load
If you applied these type of contractions to your calf muscles :-
- An Isometric contraction would be if you looped a towel over your toes and held it in both hands and then pushed against it but did not allow your ankle to move.
- A Concentric contraction would be to stand on one leg and go up onto your toes – your calf muscle is shortening and pulling your heel up.
- An Eccentric contraction of your calf muscle would be to start standing on one leg up on your toes and then to lower back down – your calf muscle is ‘paying out’ under load and lengthening as your heel is lowering.
As discussed in previous posts the role of the Achilles tendon is to store forces from the foot and transfer these forces back to the foot to help with walking and running. The calf muscles tension the Achilles in preparation for the transfer of forces from the foot – see Achilles Tendon Function. This involves the muscle working eccentrically so it makes sense to rehab the muscle in this way.
Eccentric Calf Exercise
There has been a lot of research done on Eccentric Exercises for Achilles Tendon Repair over the past 20 years or so.
The main benefits are:
- increased collagen production rate – see Tendon Healing in “Ruptured Achilles & Non-Surgical Treatment”
- increase the mass of healthy tendon because of the improved production of type I collagen
- decreased tendon thickness
- strengthen the tendon and protect it from subsequent overuse
- production of new blood vessels is decreased
The decrease in the production of new blood vessels (neovascularisation) is important because it is thought that nerve endings associated with these new blood vessels are responsible for the pain that you get with Achilles tendinosis.
Increased production of type-I collagen means that the healing area is much stronger and more likely to withstand the stresses of sport – a better tendon repair.
Achilles Tendon Repair – Rehab Eccentric Exercises
The exercises in the videos are shown for your left side – you obviously reverse the instructions for your right side.
Click on the video below
As explained in the video clip you take weight through your hands by leaning on a strong table or worktop.
The exercise does not have to be pain free – it is ok to feel some pain in the tendon as you do the exercise.
Start with 2 sets of 10 reps
progress to 2 X 15 reps
then 3 X 12
finally 3 X 15 reps.
Once you can manage 3 sets of 15 reps twice a day then you can progress the exercise by taking less weight through your hands.
When you can manage that without too much discomfort then click this video.
Again follow the progression as detailed above.
It is recommended that you continue the exercise for 12 weeks.
Remember that Achilles Tendinosis is a degenerative problem and that you need to keep loading the tendon to stimulate the repair.
If you take a break from running for more than a few days I would recommend (from personal experience) that you do these exercises or else the problem will occur on your first run back – even a gentle one!
Other Achilles Related PostsAchilles Tendon Rupture
Surgical Repair of Achilles Tendon Rupture
Ruptured Achilles Tendon and Non-Surgical Treatment
David Beckham's Achilles Tendon Rupture
Calf Exercises - Achilles Tendon Stretches
Function of the Achilles Heel Tendon
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This entry was posted on Friday, April 16th, 2010 at 9:37 am and is filed under Achilles Tendon Injury - Achilles Tendonitis Injury, Pain and Repair. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.