PreventionBy Mayo Clinic staff
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|Calf stretch exercise|
To reduce your chance of developing Achilles tendon problems, follow these tips:
- Stretch and strengthen calf muscles. Stretch your calf to the point at which you feel a noticeable pull, but not pain. Don't bounce during a stretch. Calf-strengthening exercises can also help the muscle and tendon absorb more force and prevent injury.
- Vary your exercises. Alternate high-impact sports, such as running, with low-impact sports, such as walking, biking or swimming. Avoid activities that place excessive stress on your Achilles tendons, such as hill-running and jumping activities.
- Choose running surfaces carefully. Avoid or limit running on hard or slippery surfaces. Dress properly for cold-weather training and wear well-fitting athletic shoes with proper cushioning in the heels.
- Increase training intensity slowly. Achilles tendon injuries commonly occur after a person abruptly increases his or her training intensity. Increase the distance, duration and frequency of your training by no more than 10 percent each week.
- Baer GS, et al. Achilles tendon rupture. In: DeLee JC, et al. DeLee & Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine: Principles and Practice. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-3143-7..X0001-2--TOP&isbn=978-1-4160-3143-7&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Ham P, et al. Achilles tendinopathy and tendon rupture. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Khan RJ, et al. Surgical interventions for treating acute Achilles tendon ruptures (review). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2010:CD003674.
- Mercier LR. Achilles tendon rupture. In: Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2011: Instant Diagnosis and Treatment. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05610-6..C2009-0-38600-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05610-6&about=true&uniqId=230100505-53. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Carr JB. Achilles tendon rupture. In: Browner BD, et al. Skeletal Trauma. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: W.B. Saunders Co.; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/page.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-2220-6..10060-X--s0630&isbn=978-1-4160-2220-6&sid=1182706148&uniqId=268192316-4#4-u1.0-B978-1-4160-2220-6..10060-X--s0630. Accessed July 21, 2011.
- Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 26, 2011.