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achillies heel pain - where could it come from(8 posts)

achillies heel pain - where could it come fromangrylittleman
May 7, 2002 7:53 PM
i've only made a slight adjustment to my seat (up 2mm). i'm using look p247's with red cleats. this started about 2 weeks ago, and it has gotten to where i cannot ride over 5 miles without extreme pain - enough to make me stop. i have no pain or stiffness 2 minutes after i'm off the bike.

any ideas/suggestions on what might be causing this (other than getting older)?
A few follow up questions...JBurton
May 7, 2002 8:46 PM
I had achilles tendon pain when I first started riding about three years ago that even now flares up from time to time. Raising the seat will trigger my pain (I can only assume this is because I am forced to use more of my calf muscle..."ankling" this is called, but rather forced because of my position than intentional) So now to the questions...

How long have you been riding? Have you done too much too fast?

How have your workouts been until two weeks ago? Intense? Mild? Long? Short? Were there any changes that occured two weeks ago besides raising the seat? Again, too much too fast?

Do you ice after riding? Do you force yourself to ride through the pain ever?

Another thing I did to help my pain was to use inserts in my shoes to help my foot position. Good ones, though, not the K-Mart kind, though I can't remember the exact brand. Also, I am switching to fixed look cleats (black rather than red) as I have heard that this can help, and I have no knee pain that would warrant float. I think I will like the fixed position better, and while the pain hasn't visited me in a while, I want to do everything I can to ward it off. A pulled achilles can put you off the bike for quite a while and a torn one can put you off permanently.

You may want to stop riding for a couple of weeks and put your seat back to its original position. And ICE! Do the common RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) treatment. That helped mine, also. However, I did have residual pain, unlike you seem to be having. I can't understand why you aren't, though. If it is extreme, I would expect that you would feel it when walking briskly or climbing stairs. Strange. I have a noticable limp when my achilles hurts.
I got rid of mine by...biknben
May 8, 2002 4:37 AM
...Dropping my saddle a few millimeters. I fought with pain during hard efforts especially while climbing. It only occurred on my right side.

A friend recommended I drop the saddle. I was skeptical so I dropped it only 2-3 MM and figured I'd wait and see if anything changed. I had some soreness the next ride or two but within a week it was gone.

I went to a chiropractor later for something else and he did mention that my hips weren't straight. When I mentioned the past achiles pain on the bike he said it could have been related to the hips creating a leg length descrepancy. In essence, my right leg was shorter than the other. The right side is where I was feeling pain.

I may never know the true reason for the pain but the small drop at the saddle was the end of it.
re: achillies heel pain - where could it come frommikebikr
May 8, 2002 4:39 AM
HAve you greatly in creased your training load?
I had a similar problem 2 years ago. A week off the bike had it back pretty well. Just some residual pain afterwards.

Good luck.
my experience5ive
May 8, 2002 4:42 AM
Here's my reply to a similar question on another cycling message board. Hope this helps.
here's my "duh" answer.Sintesi
May 8, 2002 5:02 AM
Your saddle is too high (duh -joke). You're probably getting too much extension on the up stroke of your pedalling revolutions. Your other leg is longer and that's why it doesn't have the same problem. Check out your Knee Over Pedal position as well. Saddle too far back can cause similar pain.
re: Try the black cleats.dzrider
May 8, 2002 9:21 AM
I have trouble with my right heel and find the black cleats are more comfortable. I also get some help from doing a set of standing toe presses after riding. Put the seat back down where it was unless something else hurt even more b4 you raised it.
Torn Achilles TendonBrooks
May 8, 2002 9:23 AM
I tore mine several years ago playing basketball (tough sport over 40). Had surgery, but no cast. PT took several months. Not an injury to take lightly. Cycling (trainer, spinning classes) was actually a beneficial exercise in the recovery. As you get older, your tendons lose their flexibility. In cycling, the biggest danger is when you drop your heel and provide maximum flexion to your ankle (and maximum stretch to the Achilles). This can occur when out of the saddle, or with a saddle height that is too LOW. An inflamed tendon (tendonitis) will be sore for quite some time. I'm not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV, but it seems to me that something else may be going on if their is no pain or stiffness a couple of minutes after stopping. If the pain is low on the heel it may be related to fasciaitis. Check with a good sports-related MD.