The achilles tendon is named after the hero from Greek mythology who was invincible everywhere except for on their ankle. Despite being named after someone with a weak ankle the achilles tendon actually stretches from the heel bone all of the way into the calf muscles. This means that while achilles heel can be a problem, a tight achilles can also cause trouble in the calf. It’s status as the largest tendon in the body means that ensuring it is loose and able to stretch as much as it should is vital to maintaining the overall health of your lower legs. So what is the best way to keep your achilles relaxed and loose?
The best way to stop yourself suffering from a tight achilles tendon is to carry out some light stretches at regular intervals. You don’t need to be suffering from a tight achilles tendon to carry these stretches out, you can just do them as part of your own regular exercise regime, possibly as part of a warm up before you embark on more strenuous activities.
The first stretch to help alleviate and prevent a tight achilles tendon is the achilles pull. In order to carry out an achilles pull you need to place the heel of your foot on the floor and then find a wall or something that is perpendicular to the floor to place the balls of your feet on. Once you have done this you just need to lean your body forwards until you feel a gentle pull.
The lunge is a great way to stretch out your achilles once you have already gently stretched it. In order to carry out a lunge stretch you need to place one foot behind the other. About 5 inches should be enough. Once you have done this you will need to step forward with your front foot, all the time making sure that you keep your back leg straight. Make sure that both feet are kept flat on the ground as you carry out this stretch. Swap feet and carry out the stretch again.
The final stretch to help keep a tight achilles tendon at bay is the sitting pull stretch. In order to carry out this stretch you need to sit down and have something to pull your foot back ready. A rolled up towel or an old shirt will be fine. Once you have sat down place your feet on the rolled up towel, or whatever you chose to use, grab both ends of the towel and gently pull towards yourself.