Tips and Tricks for Preventing Tendonitis

Tendonitis

Preventing tendonitis is far better than letting the inflammation develop and facing months of treatment, or worse, suffering a complete rupture when the tendon becomes severely damaged.

 

Here at Pennsylvania Orthopedic Associates, we’re dedicated to providing preventive care, so we’re glad to offer this information about tendonitis and how to prevent the stress that causes inflammation.

How tendonitis develops

Although you can develop tendonitis, or an inflamed tendon, following a trauma, it most often occurs due to an overuse injury. Tendons attach muscles to bones, where they’re vital for normal movement. When you frequently repeat the same muscle movement, whether at work or while engaged in athletic activities, the ongoing stress causes inflammation in the tendon associated with the muscle.

Any tendon can become inflamed, but these are a few examples of the most common types of tendonitis:

 

Here’s a list of our best tips for preventing tendonitis:

Stop the activity at the first sign of pain

By the time you feel the pain, your tendon is already inflamed, often in an advanced state of ongoing inflammation. If you continue to repeat the activity without letting the tendon rest, the inflammation worsens, the tendon continues to weaken, and ultimately, that leads to a rupture.

 

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s time to stop the activity causing the problem:

It’s essential to give your tendon time to completely heal before you get back into action.

Ignore the “no pain, no gain” rule.

Increasing the intensity, duration, or frequency of your activity too quickly is a sure way to develop tendonitis. When you place too much stress on your tendon, the pain you feel is not the type that leads to improved strength or performance.

One of the best ways to make sure you don’t push your tendons too hard is by following the 10% rule: Don’t increase your training or activity more than 10% per week. Depending on the intensity of your sport and your overall condition, some experts recommend going as slow as 5% each week.

Warm up before and stretch after your activity.

Whether you engage in repetitive activities at work, during athletics, or doing yard work at home, one of the best ways to avoid tendonitis is to warm up before placing stress on your tendons. To warm up, engage in light movement and exercise for about five minutes before your intended activity.

You should also stretch as soon as your activity is finished. When you stretch, hold the position for at least 20 seconds without bouncing. Gentle stretching prevents tendonitis, while bouncing adds stress that can lead to the problem.

Use proper technique.

Whether you engage in repetitive movements at work or in sports, proper technique helps you prevent tendonitis. Even a small deviation from the best form boosts the stress placed on your tendons and accelerates inflammation.

Take a break.

This tip is especially useful for patients at risk of tendonitis due to work activities. If your job involves repetitive activities, such as lifting, painting, hammering, or typing, take regular breaks to give your tendons a rest. Your breaks can be short, but they should be more frequent than the typical two or three breaks that most workers get during their day.

Vary your activities.

As much as possible, engage in a variety of activities so that you don’t keep placing stress on the same muscles and their tendons.

Wear proper gear.

If you engage in activities that stress your ankles, heels, and knees, like running and tennis, it’s important to wear footwear that provides the best support. You might also benefit from a brace to support the area where your tendonitis occurs.

If you’re at risk for tendonitis and you’d like help preventing the problem, call Pennsylvania Orthopedic Associates, or schedule an appointment online.

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