Do you run on your toes or your heels? Do you know? Is it something that we even think about? Well I can give you one good reason to start thinking about it – Achilles Tendonitis. Toe runners beware, Achilles Tendonitis is an inflammatory condition of the tendon due to overuse and may be contributed to by poor warm up, insufficient stretching or subtle biomechanical quirks of running style.
Toe running, whereby the ball of your foot strikes the ground rather than your heel is one of the most likely running styles to predispose you to this condition. The condition affects women more than men and specifically woman from their mid thirty’s to their fifty’s. It’s characterised by pain felt at the back of the heel and is specifically sore when the Achilles tendon stretches out first thing in the morning when putting your foot to the floor. The pain usually subsides once you begin to walk and the calf and Achilles warm up, but if left untreated can become continually painful.
Running on your toes puts a large amount of force through the contracted calf and can eventually result in tendonitis developing. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. While it’s difficult to alter someone’s running style, hands on treatment of the injured tissue and correction of the factors predisposing to the condition are essential to the satisfactory resolution of the injury.