The function of the Achilles-calf complex helps us to push forwards and/or upwards. When the tendon structure fails to do so and loses its ability to behave like a bouncy spring, it gets injured and flares up.
5 reasons why your Achilles may hurt:
- Poor strength – calf muscle and other leg muscles
- Poor mobility and flexibility of the ankle joint and calf muscle
- Inappropriate footwear for hiking – too flat or poor fit (too tight or too loose with unnecessary movement) at the heel counter may cause compression on the heel bone
- Training errors – doing too much too soon
- Inefficient biomechanics
What can you do?
- Get your Achilles strength back with calf exercises.
- When preparing for hikes that involve uphill/steep inclines, it is important to incorporate calf strengthening exercises to your training regime
- Add weights along the way. This will improve the ability of your Achilles tendon to tolerate load (you and that overnight backpack!)
- Improve your foot and ankle joint mobility
- Be careful of over-stretching your calf muscle as some Achilles conditions will worsen with stretching. Get assessed by a podiatrist before you attempt to do so
- Appropriate footwear for hiking
- Slow and gradual increase in training distance / incline with consistency over a period of time
- Address any biomechanical inefficiencies
What are the best hiking boots?
Ecco Xpedition Hike Boot– Built for adventure! Take the Ecco Xpedition on your daily walks or on BIG expeditions
- Featuring a high quality nubuck leather upper for extreme durability
- GORE-TEX lined to ensure dry and comfortable feet in cold and wet weather
- Cushioning to go the distance with a rubber outsole for durability, stability and extra grip
Hoka Anacapa – Weekend adventures? Let’s go! The Anacapa is YOUR best friend for all your adventures.
- Low cut walking shoes with cloud-like cushioning
- The GORE-TEX lining means they are fully waterproof keeping your feet dry and comfortable through wet and cold conditions
- The Anacapa utilises a Vibrum Megagrip through the outsole for superior traction on slippery and uneven surfaces
Hoka Challenger – Your ‘bit-of-everything’ shoe
- An all-terrain shoe
- Providing comfort on both the trails and the road
- Super lightweight and highly cushioned option for your light hiking and everyday walks
Saucony Peregrine – A versatile trail runner – typically classified as a trail shoe but there is no reason this stable and comfortable shoe can’t handle your day hikes.
- The lightweight mesh upper to provide breathability on warmer days
- The rubber lugs will keep you upright on the slippery surfaces
- The rock plate will provide protection from any unseen sharper rocks under foot