Achilles Tendon Rupture

Achilles tendon rupture is not an extremely common sports injury. Not nearly as often seen as achilles tendonitis, it is significantly worse. The most common population that suffers from achilles rupture is over 30 males.

Achilles Tendon

This injury is often preceded by achilles tendonitis, which may weaken the tendon and eventually result in the rupture.

What does an achilles tendon rupture mean for your sports participation? Read on to find out.

The Achilles Tendon

The achilles tendon is the insertion of the gastroc and soleus muscles into the calcaneus of the foot.

It provides the connection between the lower leg and the ankle, and allows for you to be able to point your toes. It can also be a very common site for tendonitis, and for tendon rupture.

How It Occurs

Achilles tendon rupture can occur with many different types of sports activities. The most common way to tear it is with some type of explosive activity involving the foot. For example, changing direction while playing tennis, anding forcefully on one leg, or breaking into a sprint.

Each of these motions require very rapid contraction of the calf muscles. If the achilles tendon is weakened due to tendonitis, or if the calf muscles are extremely tight, the stress may be too much and the tendon ruptures.

Signs and Symptoms

All of the patients I have seen with this injury tell me that it felt like someone kicked them in the back of the leg. They had immediate pain, swelling, and significant strength loss. They were unable to walk normally, and could not stand up on their toes.

You may also have severe bruising along the back of the calf, and may be able to feel a lump, or space along the tendon itself.


Achilles Tendon Rupture

The initial treatment for achilles tendon rupture is to follow the R.I.C.E. principles. It is also extremely important that you see your physician as soon as possible. If you have any of the symptoms above, it is imperative that you seek medical attention. The success of your recovery depends upon it.

Most achilles tendon ruptures must be treated surgically. There is so much natural tension on the achilles that there is no way for the two ends to approximate close enough to heal. Often, the muscle end of the tendon will retract up into the calf.

The success of achilles tendon repair is closely associated with how quickly surgery is performed. The longer the time from injury, the more likely the tendon will retract farther, making it harder for your surgeon to repair the tendon successfully.



The best treatment is prevention. If you can avoid this injury, you will save yourself months of rehabilitation and time away from your activities.

Regular calf stretching is vital to prevent achilles tendon rupture. The less stress on the achilles, the better. Make stretching a part of your daily routine, and definitely before and after sports. Compare 5 minutes of stretching everyday to 6 weeks on crutches, and 3 months of rehab. It is well worth it.

The other key to prevention is to pay attention to achilles tendon pain. Many times a full blown rupture is preceded by tendonitis and other problems. This is what weakens the tendon enough to cause the rupture. So, if you have achilles tendon pain, seek treatment and get it taken care of. It will save you a lot of frustration and pain later.

If you are currently suffering from achilles tendonitis, plantar faciitis, ankle, or foot pain, you could benefit from a comprehensive foot and ankle strengthening program. Foot Pain Solutions is exactly what you need to help eliminate your foot, ankle, and low leg pain. Great for prevention too, Foot Pain Solutions can guide you to finally getting rid of your chronic foot and ankle pain.

Read more about Foot Pain Solutions


A rupture of the achilles tendon is a serious ankle injury. It needs to be evaulated by your physician as soon as possible. Generally treated surgically, there is a good prognosis for return to sports after rehabilitation. Make sure you stretch before activity to work to prevent this injury. And if you have achilles tendon pain, don't ignore it. Get it taken care of. It could help keep you off the sidelines.

Didn't find what you were looking for? Search SII for more information...

Running Pain Solutions

The key to getting rid of minor aches before they become major pains is a simple, total body prevention program.

Written for Runners by a runner, you'll learn a holistic approach to improving mobility, restoring normal movement and muscle activation patterns, and restoring the body and mind connection.

This Kindle Book contains a step by step program to keep you running pain free. Included are detailed instructions and illustrations for exercises to improve mobility, balance, neuromuscular control, strength and endurance. Only $7.49!

Get Your Copy Today!

[?] Subscribe To This Site

follow us in feedly
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My MSN
Subscribe with Bloglines