Achilles Tendonitis is inflammation in the back of the heel. There a several causes that we aren’t going into in this article. What you need to know is that most people address this issue by just looking at the calf. 

Many just stretch the crap out of your calf/Achilles because somewhere somehow stretching has become this magic bullet that solves everything when in fact it doesn’t! Often stretching an already injured area is a BAD BAD idea. 

Instead, if you look at strengthening the opposite side of the joint, in this case, the anterior tibealis or front of the shin you’ll not only gain mobility (range of motion, or flexibility), but you’ll start addressing some of the underlying reasons WHY you have tight calfs or Achilles tendonitis.

2 Exercises for Achilles Tendonitis

Toe Taps

Toe taps are an excellent exercise for SO many reasons. They are awesome at helping reduce your risk of falls, improving your agility, and now today we’re highlighting them for helping address tight calfs and Achilles tendonitis.  

3 ways to do toe taps:

  1. Speed. Going as fast as possible for the number of reps (I prefer doing them for a specified time)
  2. Range of motion. You might go a little slower, but you’re focusing here on as big of a movement as possible. 
  3. Both

Start with about 30 seconds of tapping. If you don’t feel any warm, fuzzy feelings in the front of your shin, add some more time. Work up to 1 min. If you can do them fast, then try keeping maximal range of motion.

Banded Toe Raises

This exercise addresses the same area as the toe taps. The advantage this exercise has is that you can add load with the banded resistance. The toe taps are limited by just the weight or speed of your foot moving. 

By truly strengthening the anterior tibealis you will start to lessen the muscle imbalance between the calf and ant. tib which will help keep the resting position of the foot in a more neutral position, and keep any range of motion improvements for longer than a few hours. 

Start with about 2 sets of 15-20 reps. Work up to 4 sets of 20-25 reps. 

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