What is Achilles Tendinopathy?

What is Achilles Tendinopathy? 🤔

Your Achilles tendon (cord like structure) attaches your calf muscles to the heel of your foot. Achilles Tendinopathy is a condition that causes pain, sometimes swelling and a loss of function of the tendon. 😫

It used to be called Achilles Tendonitis, (itis – meaning inflammation) so you might know it as that, but then scientists thought there was little or no inflammation and we started calling it tendinopathy (pathy – meaning suffering) instead…. but very recent studies now suggest we cannot rule out inflammation! but they’re sticking with the name as I’m sure they don’t want to confuse us all again 😊

Like with other tendinopathies, overuse or incorrect use to the tendon causes little tears to appear which causes pain and discomfort. You might find that the pain starts at the beginning of use or exercise, slowly eases off whilst you are moving it, then may come back again when you are at rest. Achilles pain can be quite debilitating, and you might find that it starts to interfere with everyday life like walking to and from work or even moving around the house.

So, what can you do about it?

To manage things at the beginning, over the counter pain medication can help but be careful with longer use of Ibuprofen / Nurofen (NSAIDs) because they can sometimes hinder the tendons ability to heal.

Ice can also help with pain but make sure you wrap the ice so it doesn’t hurt your skin suggested use is for 10 mins.

Want to know what REALLY fixes Achilles tendinopathy if it’s hanging around?

Exercises that are specific to the tendon are the best and most evidence-based form of treatment for these problems, but they may often be hard to implement on your own.

Physio will help! Get in touch with us today if this is YOU or you no someone struggling with this, we’d love to help you.

What is Golfer’s Elbow?

What is  Golfer’s elbow? 🤔

So you may have seen our recent blog about Tennis Elbow where Golfer’s elbow was mentioned?

If you didn’t, scroll back on our page and you can read all about Tennis Elbow, if you would like. We briefly mentioned how Golfer’s Elbow is similar but is not to be confused with Tennis Elbow.

So, what is the difference?

Well, Golfer’s Elbow affects the inside of the elbow, the Medial epicondyle, rather than the outside, the lateral epicondyle.

Golfer’s elbow occurs when damage has affected the muscles and tendons that control the wrists and fingers. This is usually due to repeated stress, not warming up before your activities and improper technique and you don’t have to be a golfer for these things to happen, it could even be an occupational hazard.

So, what can you do?

The best thing you can do is to fix your form and ensure that you are warming up properly before repetitive activities.

Specific exercises can stretch and strengthen the affected area and progressive loading (slowly adding more resistance or weight) has been shown to be especially effective. It’s also a really good idea to find a professional who can help put together this programme properly.

Physiotherapists can create a specific exercise and progressive loading programmes just for you.

If you think you are suffering from Golfer’s Elbow why not get in touch and see how we can help you

What is Tennis Elbow?

You know, you don’t have to play tennis to have tennis elbow. So, what is tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis as it is technically called.

Really it just means pain or inflammation over the outside of your elbow, over the bony lump (the lateral epicondyle). This is not to be confused with pain on the inside which is called ‘Golfer’s elbow’ which you don’t have to be a golfer to get either but that’s another topic for another post.

Tennis elbow usually happens because you have overused the muscles attached to your elbow/s which also help to straighten your wrist, this can cause tiny tears in the muscle which then causes pain and inflammation.

This can happen due to overuse or repetitive movements like, well, playing tennis or even cleaning the windows or decorating. It’s usually best to avoid the activity which is causing you the issue in cases of tennis elbow and there are also things you can try like applying something cold (like a bag of frozen peas) a few times a day or taking over the counter pain relief in the first instance.

The key to resolving these, and preventing them happening again, is a specific strength (loading) programme. This can be tricky to structure on your own, and that’s where we come in with the know how to progress you slowly with the right exercises!

If you want a little help on relieving the symptoms or you’re just having no luck and they aren’t going, then Physiotherapy is great for sorting it out and getting the movement back in your arm and relieving the stiffness.