Achilles tendonitis is a common injury many cyclists experiences when over using their ankle joint. Repetitive cycling can cause the Achilles tendon to become inflamed, causing pain that will get worse if left untreated.
The Achilles tendon is very important, as it attaches the back of your foot to your calf, enabling you to run, jump, walk, or do anything that involves using our feet. Repetitively using the tendon without proper conditioning can cause inflammation, leading to pain and swelling in the back of the heel.
Bikers can prevent Achilles tendonitis by:
- Warming up calf muscles before working out
- Strengthening ankle muscles
- Wearing properly fitting shoes
- Adjusting bike height so that you do not overextend your foot while pedaling
Do not ignore pain near your heel. If you think you may have Achilles tendonitis:
- Stop cycling for at least two days
- Use ice to decrease inflammation
- Elevate your foot
After you’ve been diagnosed with Achilles tendonitis by an experienced orthopedist at New York Bone and Joint Specialists, you can begin treating it and preparing your joint for more cycling. Physical therapy will help you stretch out the aggravated tendon and regain range of motion in the area. After this phase, your physical therapist will guide you through custom exercises to strengthen your ankle and calf muscles. This will help your body better withstand the repeptitive use of the joint and keep it from straining your Achilles tendon in the future.