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Tis The Season For Achilles Tendon Injuries

Dr. Steven Raikin pointing to Achilles tendon on a teaching model of a foot. (Credit: Michelle Durham)

Dr. Steven Raikin pointing to Achilles tendon on a teaching model of a foot. (Credit: Michelle Durham)

Michelle Durham Michelle Durham
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By Michelle Durham

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Tis the season for Achilles tendon injuries. A local orthopedic expert says, especially in the spring months, this injury is more common than you think.

“The major reason for Achilles tendon rupture is tightness in the Achilles tendon,” Dr. Steven Raikin is Director of Foot and Ankle at the Rothman Institute. “Somebody has got this tight rubber band that they suddenly go and push-off on playing basketball or softball. As they start running, the Achilles tendon has a tendency to rupture. The prevention is stretching.”

Listen to Michelle Durham’s interview with Dr. Steven Raikin in this CBS Philly Podcast:

Right click to download the podcast.

Part of the reason for the tightness is many folks have spent the majority of the winter in front of the TV and not exercising.

“We see Achilles tendon ruptures throughout the year. Unquestionably, they’re most common in the spring. And it’s not so much eating donuts through the winter and it is not doing stretching.”

He suggests, “Stretching should be done two to three times minimum every day. If you have a tendency to tightness or have had Achilles tendon problems in the past then you should do them four to five times a day. And it’s just five minutes of stretching — a good wall stretch,” which is different than the more dynamic stretching lunges you may do before aerobics or a run.

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