Definition: Achilles Tendinitis or Tendinosis is a painful degenerative, overuse syndrome of the thickest and strongest tendon in the human body. The Achilles tendon attaches the calf muscle (gastrocnemius and soleus) to the back of the heel bone (calcaneus).
Function: The Achilles Tendon is responsible for plantar flexion (same movement that occurs when you point your foot) and therefore important for activities such as walking, running, jumping, climbing.
The Achilles tendon is prone to injury because it is used in all weight bearing activities and in many sports. Micro tearing of the tendon often results from intensive repetitive activities especially which are predominantly eccentric in nature. The Achilles tendon also does not have a good blood supply, so injury can be slow to heal.
Custom made Orthotics are one of the most effective methods to reduce your symptoms and pain. They are able to redistribute and load the foot in a different way in order to decrease the stress put onto the ankle bones and long arches. Pedorthists use interventions such as a deep heel cups, and a stabilizing arch support. Proper footwear is just as important as the orthotic to recovery. Talk to your Pedorthist about proper footwear choices for you.