As outlined in previous posts, the key to returning back to sport well involves a great strengthening program which involves heavy resistance training and hop/skipping drills to help train the Achilles to adapt to the functional needs of sports. By doing so, you can return to sport performing well and without pain! In this blog post, 3 examples of appropriate exercises are shown which can be performed depending on what stage of rehabilitation:
1. Single leg calf raise using a Smith Machine, performed slowly with heavy weight off the edge of a step:
Heavy, slow, through-range strengthening has been supported in the research as highly effective for pain and provides a great base of strength, which is important for function because ‘power’ is ultimately the application of strength at a high speed. So, the stronger you become, the more powerful you can potentially be for activities such as taking off to sprint or jumping to rebound a basketball.
2. Forward drives
While single leg calf raises are great for covering the strength aspect of power. Forward drives are a great exercise for training the healing Achilles tendon to the speed aspect of power. Each rep must be performed at a quick speed.
Finally, A-skips are a great exercise to put together both strength and speed in a functional movement. To start with, it can be performed without weights, and dumbbells or weight plates can be held above the head to provide extra resistance
While a full program for Achilles tendon pain will likely involve more exercises than just the above, it is important to re-adapt the Achilles tendon for both the strength and speed demands of sport.
How can Physiotherapy help you?
At Melbourne Sports Physiotherapy our goal is to get you moving pain free as soon as possible.
But, we also want you to actually move better and live a healthier, more active and fulfilling life!
If your work has been wearing your body down, book in with one of our expert physiotherapists so we can help you reduce your pain and bullet proof your body so that you can keep working in the long run.
If you are showing some signs of injury or simply want help staying injury-free then book in with one of our highly experienced Physiotherapists today!