It can be challenging to find the best shoes for Achilles Tendonitis amidst the vast array of options available these days. After all, pain is subjective and one person’s pain threshold is different than another. This means that what may be a great option for one person with an Achilles tear will not necessarily be as comfortable or as effective for someone else.
What is an Achilles tendon?
Most people who suffer from Achilles Tendonitis will have a process of degeneration in the tendon. The degeneration is often described as changes in the structure of the tendon where fibers that used to be parallel become tangled. This can result in a visible lump in the Achilles.
The most important thing though is that this process is reversible by changing the load through the tendon. What do we mean by loading the tendon? Increased load on the Achilles could be anything where you use the Achilles more than normal. Some basic examples are going for a weekend hike on uneven ground, playing social sport for the first time in a while, or simply a weekend of backyard renovations.
If you think you might have Achilles Tendonitis, then we suggest you visit a local physiotherapist for an assessment and treatment plan to help resolve your symptoms and prevent any future issues from occurring.
What are the causes of tendonitis?
Tendonitis is a painful type of injury that can be caused by a number of different reasons. The most common cause of tendonitis is the repetitive strain on the affected area, which can occur during sports or exercise. Achilles tendonitis is one such type of injury, and it is characterized by inflammation, pain, and swelling in the tendons behind the ankle.
Tendonitis can also be caused by poor foot mechanics and footwear that does not provide enough support for the foot. Worn-out shoes are another common cause of tendonitis, particularly if you have flat feet or high arches.
Age is also important to consider, as older people are more susceptible to tendonitis due to their weakened immune systems and lower levels of hormones. Obesity is a risk factor for many types of tendonitis since there is an excess strain placed on the tendons with extra weight. Medications and diseases such as psoriasis can also cause tendonitis.
What are the treatments and preventive measures for tendonitis?
Tendonitis is not a disease and does not require antibiotics, but it does require a change in lifestyle. The first step is to rest the area for at least two weeks. Anything that causes pain should be avoided, including cross-training activities. Most importantly, you need to stretch the involved muscles and tendons.
Steroid injection is not needed for tendonitis and should be used only as a last resort for severe cases that have not responded to rest, anti-inflammatory medication, and stretching exercises. The procedure involves injecting a steroid medication directly into the irritated tendon sheath. It is done in a physician’s office under local anesthesia.
The steroid injection provides temporary relief by reducing the inflammation around the sheath of the involved tendon. However, it carries some risks of side effects such as infection, swelling, stiffness, and nerve damage if it’s done improperly or repeatedly.
Contrary to popular belief, surgery is rarely necessary for Achilles Tendonitis unless it becomes a long-term problem lasting more than six months. For example, patients with chronic Achilles tendonitis may need surgery to remove scar tissue or to divide tight bands of tissue called tenosynovitis bands that connect the Achilles tendon to its surrounding tissues.
Features of good shoes for Achilles tendonitis
The key to finding the right shoes for Achilles tendonitis is to find a shoe that provides as much support and cushioning in the arch and heel as possible. For most people, this means selecting a sandal-style shoe.
Most athletic shoes have an elevated heel, which will place additional pressure on your Achilles tendon and can aggravate your condition. Firm arches are ideal for someone with Achilles tendonitis. Look for plenty of cushioning and a comfortable footbed.
Durable and shock-absorbing midsoles and rubber outsoles are also important for providing stability for your foot and minimizing shock.
Adjustable straps are better than slip-on styles, which can be difficult to use with braces or wraps on your ankle. A heel strap or counter is ideal in a sandal because it helps keep your foot from sliding forward in the shoe.
Review of some shoes for Achilles tendonitis
We are going to review some best shoes for Achilles tendonitis. If you have Achilles tendonitis and you need a shoe that’s comfortable, look no further.
Rocker bottom shoes for Achilles Tendonitis
Rock on with these super comfortable, excellent performing shoes. At the heart of the shoe is a biomechanically shaped rocker bottom shoe that is built to help reduce Achilles tendon strain in both running and walking. It has a unique sole design with no central pressure points and its soft supple leather conforms well to even the hardest of feet. Breathable mesh panels keep your feet fresh and a removable molded orthotic insole provides you with extra arch support if needed. The deep toe box and shoes seem to fit most feet, so they are perfect for long-distance runners such as marathoners or even sprinters who are looking for great cushioning when running in wider feet.
Some of our recommendations on rocker bottom shoes are below:
MBT shoes provide your feet with the unique rocker bottom rollers that set their shoes apart from other brands. The rocker bottom design of MBT shoes makes it possible to propel yourself forward without placing excess stress on the Achilles tendon, which is the source of foot pain in many people. Seamless integration of the human anatomy, biomechanics, and aesthetics, this brand’s products are versatile enough to fit both men and women.
Hoka Oneone Shoes
The Hoka One One brand was designed with a focus on curved rocker bottom technology to help propel you through gait. They combine midsole versatility and foot-shaped cushioning with a maximally cushioned running shoe that helps relieve aches and pains. These shoes are designed with extra cushioning at heel strike and help to propel the foot during the toe-off phase of running. Their special features have made them the favored choice of the Boston marathon winning team along with many other marathon runners.
Open shoes for Achilles Tendonitis
Open shoes are the ideal footwear for the treatment of Achilles tendonitis and other problems with the tendon. The open-type shoes can increase the blood flow to your foot and reduce the pressure on the back of your heel. This may be particularly important with insertional Achilles tendonitis, but some closed-in shoes will still irritate mid-substance tendonitis.
Some of our recommendations on open shoes are below:
Crocs are one of the most comfortable shoes when dealing with Achilles Tendonitis. The sole and fit make them great for everyday walking. The open heel is excellent for insertional Achilles. The only downside to this shoe is the plastic can wear out quickly but they are cheap and easily replaceable.
BIRKENSTOCK® Shoes provide comfort and health that you can see and feel. All of our shoes are designed to offer the best possible foot support through anatomically correct contouring and patented anatomic footbeds. Many of our shoes are available with a variety of orthopedic components.
Joggers for Achilles Tendonitis
Depending on your injury, you may need to wear a different type of shoe. We do not recommend wearing normal joggers, but we do recommend that you should wear some type of trainer. This will help keep the load off of your tendon and promote healing.
Asics is a well-established brand and offers a great variety of shoes for all levels of runners, from beginners to those training for marathons. These shoes have been designed considering that people have different foot types. This makes their shoe range suitable for most of the running population. These shoes are also extremely lightweight which helps runners save some energy on their long runs.
Brooks shoes are runners’ favorites and many people suffering from Achilles Tendonitis swear by them. The shoes can hug the foot tightly in some cases and may not be a perfect fit for all people with insertional Achilles Tendonitis. But on the other hand, this hindfoot support could be what some mid-tendon Achilles Tendonitis people need.
New Balance shoes
The new balance shoes for Achilles Tendonitis have stood the test of time and many will testify that they are a favorite. Whilst it is fairly obvious that the design aesthetics hit on the conservative minimalist side of life, the range does cover most color schemes and styles. The primary benefit with these shoes is the wide fit which means those who suffer from a larger foot don’t need to resort to a women’s version of an equivalent shoe.
Boots For Achilles Tendonitis
When you are suffering from tendon pain in your heel, wearing an uncomfortably high boot can make even the simplest tasks feel like a chore. The vast majority of boots are designed with a higher back, resulting in pressure that can inflame your plantar fasciitis. When you want to wear boots but need comfort and relief for your condition- choose these boots.
Gravity defyer shoes
Gravity defyer shoes are well made and fit very nicely. The designs are classy and feminine, with a large assortment of sizes and colors to choose from. These shoes help relieve pain in your heels and feet. They have heel cushioning (no more uncomfortable stilettos), ankle support (the perfect training shoe), and lots of room in the front of the shoe so that your toes can spread out like they should when you’re walking.
Work Shoes For Achilles Tendonitis
If you have Achilles tendonitis, particularly when you are at work, wearing low-heeled, supportive shoes will help to reduce strain and pain. We recommend this padded shoe as it is one of the healthiest options while still providing comfort. The slight lift in the heel helps to reduce the load on your feet, and the arch support will ensure that your foot position allows for good circulation.
Dr. Comfort has many types of work shoes for your specific needs. They offer a wide variety of styles for both men and women, with a broad range of sizes to ensure you can get what you need. Dr. Comfort provides adequate heel cushioning and good mid-sole support throughout your day, while they take a little bit to break in. They are usually heavier shoes, so they can take some getting used to depending on what you are usually walking in.
Other Crowd Favourite Brands
We have already covered some of the top shoe brands, but there are many others to consider when choosing what shoes to buy. Here we will briefly outline some alternatives and highlight their qualities.
Vionic offers a range of shoes for anyone looking to keep their feet happy and healthy. For years Vionic has been an industry leader in creating supportive shoes for heel and arch pain that look great and feel good. Whether you need a pair of pumps for the office or athletic shoes for your weekend warrior, Vionic has the perfect shoe for you.
Skechers have recently started making shoes for people with a wider feet. These shoes are great for those with a high instep or those suffering from Achilles Tendonitis. This review will keep you up to date on our findings and you can see how they help in the video where I do a walk-through of my current wardrobe and footwear.