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  • Writer's picture Dane Monaghan - Physio

Tendons and Loading Based Injuries

Updated: May 24, 2023

Tendon and loading-based injuries Tendon and loading-based injuries are extremely common presentations that our patients present with here at High Line Active Physiotherapy. Tendons are what attach muscles to bones throughout the body and they have the ability to transmit large mechanical forces. Example: Our Achilles tendon helps transmit high amounts of force from our calf muscles to allow us to run or jump Tendons are very picky with the amount of load that they are exposed to. They love being loaded but they HATE being overloaded. The latter is often where we see injuries occur from overloading the tissue. A common presentation of this is someone who has just taken up a new activity such as:

  • Running

  • Playing a social sport that they previously weren’t

  • An increase in manual labour (Re-doing the garden)

  • High training loads in competitive sports

Basically any form of SPIKE in load. So this may result in some pain or weakness when performing the desired task.

The next step is important. Often if you are having these types of symptoms then we will just rest but what is ‘rest’




Rest

Rest is important for training and day-to-day life in general. It is also very important when recovering from an injury - but sometimes rest can be misunderstood when we are injured


Resting after an injury does help our tissues recover a bit and our symptoms to settle a lot but rest also means you lose tissue capacity and overall general tolerance activities!


Physiotherapy helps to reduce your symptoms faster so that you can get back into your usual activity levels before you know it. This helps to ensure we reduce the reduction of our tissue capacity


This can mean if you only rest to recover after an injury, once you return back to activity you can quickly exceed capacity levels again and suffer a reoccurrence


This means that when we recover, we should focus on maintaining or building up our capacity and tolerance levels


By focusing on this, it means that we can reduce injuries repeating and reoccuring pain



Resting Pattern #1 - What commonly occurs
Graph with green and blue lines, showing rest post injury
graph with blue and green line, showing loading too quickly











 

Graph with blue and green lines with red injury points
graph showing reoccurring injury cycle
















Resting Pattern #2 - Best practice and what we can help you with!
graph showing maintaining of capacity after injury
Graph with green and blues lines showing optimal loading






Take home message It is easy to think these diagrams above are easy to follow but unfortunately, they aren’t. To understand your capacity, a series of strength and functional tests are performed by your physiotherapist to gain a more accurate understanding of this particular part of the body and its capacity to load. Once we have an understanding of this, an appropriately designed exercise program or load management program will be given to the patient to ensure they are loading as effectively as possible.


This can be a difficult process so please don’t do it alone - we are here to help! Come book in with one of our Physiotherapists here at High Line Active We have seen so many of our Richmond endurance-based athletes over the years and we've been so lucky to be involved in the journey of teaching and prescribing appropriate loading advice

Thanks for your time Dane Monaghan High Line Active




Credit to @Adam Meakins (thesportsphysio) for the images


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