Strengthen Your Ankle Tendons
If you’ve ever rolled your ankle, you have felt that pain along the outside of the foot – it’s sharp, swells up, and makes walking incredibly difficult.
But sometimes pain occurs at the outside ankle area, and you have no idea where it came from. You’ll ask yourself “what did I do to cause that? I didn’t trip, I didn’t fall, and I didn’t roll it.” If you’re experiencing mysterious ankle pain, the peroneal tendons may be to blame.
What Is Ankle Tendon Pain Called?
A peroneal tendinopathy is dysfunction of the peroneal tendon. These tendons connect the peroneal muscles to the outside and base of the foot. They’re responsible for plantar flexion and eversion movements of the foot.
When there’s increased load to the tendon from an increase in running, training, or sports that require significant amounts of sharp movements, function of the peroneal tendon group will be disrupted. Depending on the severity of the tendon irritation, an injury can manifest as inflammation, pain with movement, weakness, and range of motion restriction. This makes getting back to your sport and everyday activities difficult to participate in.
Who Gets It?
This injury is typically seen if you’re a high volume and intense training athlete. It’s also common if you have chronically rolled your ankle(s). Having a history of rolled ankles weakens the supportive ligaments, and stresses the peroneal muscles and tendons that provide structure and protection. This ultimately increases the demand on the peroneal tendons, furthering risk of injury.
The pain tends to be gradual at first, and most people ignore the pain until it becomes chronic and aggravated with common activities like running.
What Can You Do About It?
Education – Don’t Go At It Alone
Like all tendon injuries, it’s important to seek education on load management from your therapist. Your tendons need sufficient time to heal, but this doesn’t mean a full stop in using your muscles. You’ll want a progressive plan focused on regaining full range of motion of the ankle, strength, and stability. That often means knowing what your limits are, respecting limitations, and having a goal specific approach to regaining function.
People with a peroneal tendinopathy typically show reduced movement in the joints responsible for eversion of the foot. Your therapist at Myodetox can work on any restrictive muscle and joint that may be contributing to movement restriction and pain.
Your therapist will work with you and provide the correct exercises to regain your ankle movements. If you’re unable to access a therapist immediately, give some of these exercises a try.
Ankle CARs: Click here to watch the video
Foam Rolling: Click here to watch the video
Strength Training: Click here to watch the video
Stability Training: Click here to watch the video
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What is Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy?
The less we know about something, the easier it is to ignore. The pelvic floor is a group of muscles with attachments to your pubic bone, tailbone, and pelvis. However, it isn’t something we see everyday (or ever), so many people don’t understand its role in relation to the rest of our bodies.
Before we get into Pelvic Floor Therapy, let’s first understand…
What Is The Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor is a general term used to describe a group of muscles, ligaments, and fascia that creates a natural ‘hammock’ for the pelvis.
The functions of the pelvic floor include:
Supporting abdominal organs
Stabilizing the low back and “core”
Controlling bladder and stool function
Maintaining positive sexual stimulation
Pelvic floor issues can include pelvic pain or bowel/ bladder issues. The pain can be described as burning, stinging, painful sitting, and more. Bowel/ bladder dysfunctions include leaking, dribbling, constipation, urgency, and frequency- to name a few.
How Does Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy Help?
At Myodetox, our Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist will evaluate the extent to which the muscle, nerves, and fascia affect the issue.
Pelvic Floor Therapy can include;
Trigger point release
Neural/visceral/ myofascial release
Soft tissue mobilizations
Therapeutic exercises, and more.
This conversation can be difficult to have, but our trained staff empowers you to seek the proper care for pelvic floor dysfunctions.
What To Expect At Your First Session
Seeking pelvic floor therapy can be intimidating. Our hope is that this blog can help you navigate your first Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy Session and make your visit as comfortable as possible.
Our pelvic physical therapist will gather as much information regarding your condition. Too often we hear that pelvic pain is dismissed. Therefore, it is important to us to create the time and space to understand your pelvic pain. That is why our initial evaluation is 60-minutes long and conducted in a private treatment room for patient privacy.
Depending on your history and symptoms, our pelvic therapist can perform an external evaluation of the spine, hips, pelvis, and abdomen- an exam which is very similar to an orthopedic physical therapy exam.
You will then have the option to proceed with an internal pelvic exam. (No spectrum is used, only one gloved finger.) Our pelvic therapist is certified to treat both female pelvic floor and male pelvic floor dysfunctions internally. If consent is given, the therapist may evaluate vaginally or rectally, while explaining the procedure every step of the way.
After the assessment is complete, the pelvic therapist will explain their findings and what is needed in your future treatments. Your treatment may include visceral mobilization, soft tissue mobilization, trigger point release, stretches, strengthening, breathework, and more.
We hope this serves to put any hesitancy at ease. If you have further questions you can contact Myodetox Brentwood at (925) 430-6630.
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How to come back from runner’s knee
Rafael Nadal is a legend in the tennis community. With 22 Grand Slam wins (to date) and many other tennis accolades, Nadal has solidified himself as one of the greatest tennis players of all time (in fact, he was No.1 for 209 weeks!).
Unfortunately, in 2005 during the Wimbledon final, he suffered a knee injury. This injury wasn’t a tear or dislocation, but it was enough to interfere with his play. His knee troubles continued for years, even forcing him to withdraw from the 2012 US Open. Rafael Nadal has since been able to recover and continue his astonishing career, but it hasn’t been without hard work.
So what is this knee injury that set him back?
What Is Runner’s Knee?
If you’re a runner of any level, you’re likely familiar with “Runner’s Knee.” This condition, medically known as patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), is pain at the front of the knee caused by dysfunctional movement patterns of the patella (i.e. kneecap) and femur (i.e. your thigh bone) that can lead to pain at the patellar tendon (i.e. the thick tendon at the bottom of your knee cap). As you can tell from Rafael Nadal’s injury , PFPS doesn’t only affect runners.
There are a number of reasons for knee pain, but patellofemoral pain syndrome is the most common. This injury, though common in running, is also seen in sports associated with running, jumping, and other high load demands. People with PFPS are able to reproduce their pain with squats, going up stairs, jumps, and of course – running.
What Are The Main Causes?
Everyone’s experience with PFPS is different, but the most common causes are:
Overuse injury: this can be an increase in volume, or introducing a challenge to the knee that it may not be ready for (e.g. under training for a challenging run, or hiking for the first time in years)
Muscle: deficits like weakness at the quadriceps and hips can contribute to PFPS
Injury: previous injuries (e.g. dislocations) can contribute to PFPS
Movement Coordination: the joint angle to the knee may stress the tendon, leading to pain.
Mobility Impairment: you can be excessive movement or lack flexibility of certain muscle groups, which further contributes to PFPS
What Are The Main Signs and Symptoms?
The signs and symptoms of patellofemoral pain syndrome may not all be applicable to you, but be mindful of the following:
Pain with lower leg exercises e.g. cycling, running, weight lifting.
Pain with walking, stairs, kneeling, and squatting.
Pain at the knee with sitting too long e.g. watching a movie or sitting on a plane.
Aggravated pain with increased use e.g. walking or cycling longer distances.
Who’s At Risk?
Age can play a big factor when it comes to PFPS. This is typically seen in teenagers and young adults. When we age, problems with the knee tend to be more joint related e.g. arthritis
Sex differences are also present with PFPS. Unfortunately, women are twice as likely as men to experience PFPS. The common causes of PFPS are often related to women more than men e.g. joint alignment with the hip and muscle imbalances.
Activity specific – as said before, runner’s knee is commonly seen in sports that involve running, jumping, cutting, and any other sport that stresses the knee.
What Can Be Done?
There are a number of things you can do to alleviate pain at the knee. Try these below:
Foam Rolling helps release your muscles from any myofascial tension caused by poor flexibility, overuse, or muscle weakness. Though temporary in affect, it can be a very helpful tool to use in the rehab arsenal.
Taping at the knee can temporarily help alleviate pain, especially with movements like getting up and down a chair or a set of stairs.
Mobility is key to addressing knee pain. This can include dynamic whole body movements, as well as specific stretches to alleviate tension at the knee. Here are some examples of movements that alleviate tension of the quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors, glute muscles, and calf.
Strength training has the highest level of evidence for alleviating “runner’s knee.” This should be incorporated into a rehabilitation and maintenance routine. The research supports exercises that target the quadriceps and hips to facilitate the proper mechanics for the knee. Here are some examples you can try at home: glute bridge, stork, and squat.
It’s important to note that mobility and strength exercises will serve you best under guidance from a healthcare professional. Even professional athletes and therapists alike benefit from coaching, cues, and progressions for the knee exercises under safe conditions.
Ready to start managing your Runner’s Knee?
Though there are many things you can do to immediately help your pain, seeing a healthcare professional sooner rather than later can offset any gaps in treatment. Your therapist will provide the needed guidance for pain management, progressions, and ultimately working with you to help reach your goals.
Therapists have other tools up their sleeve – manual therapy, gait/movement retraining (biomechanics), blood flow restriction therapy, taping, education
It is important to see a licensed healthcare professional if you’re experiencing PFPS. It’s not uncommon for people to push through the pain. Unfortunately, this ends up lengthening your recovery time. By seeing a healthcare provider sooner rather than later, you can prevent any further damage ensure that you’re given the tools to address the causes of your pain and FutureProof your body.
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