Achilles Tendonitis means 'inflammation of the Achilles Tendon'. The Achilles Tendons are the longest tendons in the body and they connect the calf muscles to the heel. When the calf muscles contract they pull on the Achilles Tendon, causing the foot to point down and helping you rise on your toes. Therefore, the Achilles tendon plays an important role in walking and running.
Achilles pain occurs just above the back of the heel and often sufferers experience tightness in the calf muscles. The Achilles Tendon may be noticeably thickened and a bit tender to touch. Pain is present with walking and running, especially when pushing off on the toes.
Achilles Tendonitis pain can develop gradually without any history of injury or trauma. The pain can be a burning pain, a shooting pain or even an extremely piercing/stabbing pain. Achilles Tendonitis should not be left untreated because there's a chance of the tendon becoming weak and eventually rupturing. Achilles pain can be aggravated by activities that repeatedly put stress on the tendon (e.g. running) causing irritation and inflammation.
Achilles pain is a common problem, often experienced by athletes - particularly long distance runners. Achilles Tendonitis is a difficult injury to treat in athletes due to their high level of activity and reluctance to stop or slow down their training.
People who suffer from Achilles Tendonitis often notice that their first steps out of bed in the morning are very painful. Or pain after taking their first steps after long periods of sitting. The pain often lessens with activity.