Achilles Tendon Strain/Rupture

Your achilles tendon is a large tendon connecting your calf muscle to your heel.  A stain/tear in this tendon can cause significant pain, and an inability to run and jump properly.  Full rupture of this tendon is most common in “weekend warriors” in their 40s and 50s.  Depending on the age and sport type of the athlete, achilles tendon repair may be recommended, but many older or lower level activity (not running/jumping) patients are able to treat this condition conservatively.

The most common mechanism of injury for an Achilles strain/rupture is landing from a jump or a forceful push off. 

– Middle aged. 

– Poor ankle/calf mobility. 

– Poor jumping/running mechanics. 

– Training errors (weekend warrior). 

– Chronic achilles tendinopathy. 

– Medications.

– Pain at the achilles. 

– Snap/”I’ve been shot” sensation at the achilles. 

– Inability to do a heel raise. 

– Difficulty walking, running, jumping.

At Home Diagnostic Tests

Thompson Test. (see video)


At Home Care

–  Initiated swelling protocol — elevation, compression, ankle pumps. 

– Ice.

– NSAIDs  as needed for comfort care.


When to Seek Help

If you believe you’ve strained or ruptured your Achilles tendon, see your physical therapist as soon as possible.  Their clinical assessment will determine whether you need medical imaging, and you’ll get pain relieving and mobility improving treatment on the same day – won’t get that in a PCP’s office.


Inspired Athletx Treatment

Initially, your physical therapist will utilize manual techniques to improve pain, reduce spasm, and increase range of motion in your calf and ankle.  Therapeutic exercises progress to include strengthening, balance, neuromuscular control, gait pattern, plyometric, and running activities as tolerated.