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-   -   Speeding up a calf injury? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=453178)

TroutSc 01-30-2013 05:49 PM

Speeding up a calf injury?
 
Ive been nursing my left calf, had a good pop one day (few months ago), recovered, but has reoccurred a few times and puts me out a few days. It came back recently so I have been wrapping it and playing with it, seems about 95% or better now. I played last night with it wrapped, it did fine.

Today my right one is bad. Had no feeling of 'pop' or any issues in a match last night, but this morning it was screaming. tight, hurts to stretch it, tender to poke on it. Ive been playing everyday, so took today off. I will skip team practice tomorrow evening as well and not play friday. However, I am already in the line up for a tourney this weekend starting Saturday. I plan to play, rested it today and have it compressed. I will rest it tomorrow and friday as well.

In the meantime, should I be icing it or heating it. Ive googled some but have mixed results. Like I said, this time its my right calf, but it never popped or had an acute noticeable injury.

Should I keep it full time compressed? Ice it? heat it? Stretch good, do some extended warm up and stretching on saturday prematch? Any advice?

LeeD 01-30-2013 05:58 PM

15 minutes of heat for sure, but cold is to alleviate swelling. Do you have any swelling?
Can't rush this one, you gotta let it run it's course.
Try insoles that raise your heels, so your calves don't work as hard.
Don't run. Instead hit harder and more to the corners.

TroutSc 01-31-2013 04:05 AM

Thanks. No on the swelling. Tightness/tenderness mainly.

mikeler 01-31-2013 05:25 AM

Maybe massage would help but I really don't know. Like Lee said, I think it just has to run its course. Calf raises are probably something you should do daily once both calves are completely healed.

Chas Tennis 01-31-2013 06:53 AM

There are several calf and Achilles injury threads in this forum that have lots of information. You can read how some of these injuries developed sometimes into a chronic condition (long term or permanent injury due to the healed tissue being defective). Most players who have experienced calf injuries warn that it is one of the more difficult injuries to recover from. A young player on my USTA team injured his calf last year before the season started and was not able to play after many weeks of recovery. He missed the league. I'm not sure how he is doing now.

The possible causes are also discussed with links for information. There is an injury called 'Tennis Leg'. You sound as if something might be too tight, perhaps the calves? Posture issues? Lifestyle issue? When seated, calves are bent all week and get short and tight, playing tennis stretches them and they tear. ? (I assume that you are younger and probably not taking statins which can have muscle side-effects that I don't understand.)

One difficulty with the calves is that they provide a lot of force just walking, climbing stairs, etc. It is not as easy to take stress off of an injured calf muscle with an upper body injury, say, an arm injury.

Also, the Achilles tendons come up pretty high to meet the calf muscles so maybe the injury might be of the Achilles or both.

There are also many stories in the forums of players getting farther injured by playing in some important tennis event that they normally would not miss. They are conditioned to think in that way and may not have experienced any chronic injuries. People who has gotten a chronic injury can often see the other side of playing with pain.

What do you know about the risk? Have you, for example, ruptured 8% of the area of your soleus or gastrocnemius muscle? The injury is now a few days into healing. Does that weak 8% area stretch and re-tear - it has only 'healed' for a few days - if you play tennis? Or does it enlarge around its edges because it is weakened and tennis puts heavy stress on the injury site and especially the strong uninjured tissue around the injury? If there were a pain killer, more effective than the usual NSAIDs, that would completely eliminate pain, would that be a good idea?

Do you think it is a reasonable idea to have an undiagnosed injury and then play tennis where you are going to heavily stress the same torn/injured tissues while it is healing?

Best approach is to stop playing and otherwise stressing your calves and see a well qualified Dr. Don't exercise or stretch injured tissue.

charliefedererer 01-31-2013 10:52 AM

RICE. Rest. Ice. Compression. Elevation.

All these are effective at decreasing the pain and swelling.

But aside from Rest, and unless you have a lot of swelling, it is unlikely that doing the ICE part will significantly speed recovery - but feeling better is good too!

Heat works if there is a component of muscle spasm to relax the muscle. If the muscle feels very tight, heat then would be a reasonable thing to try.


For the older injury - the left calf - you may want to try myofascial release. Suzanna McGee, who often posts here as sixftlion, has a couple of article on how to do it on her web site:
Calf Myofascial Release for Injury Prevention and Better Tennis Game http://www.examiner.com/article/calf...er-tennis-game
Trigger Points and Chronic Pain http://www.tennisfitnesslove.com/201.../#.UQq6M780WSo


You might even consider doing massage for your most recent injury, but definitley don't push it too much if it hurts. The massage may help relieve the muscle spasm around the area of injury (that is, IF there is an area of muscle spasm around the injury.)






[Here is the reason I think it works for more chronic injuries is that at the site of healing.
Sometimes tissues get inappropriately "glued" together - by protein bands laid down to heal the actual injury.
Some of those protein bands unfortunately also attach themselves to adjacent muscle/tendon/fascia.
Then, instead of the healed muscle smoothly gliding next to the adjacent muscle/tendon/fascia, it pulls on it instead.
Massaging the area can break down these inappropriate attachments and let the muscle freely slide past all the adjacent tissue - no longer pulling at it.]

tennis_tater 02-01-2013 07:51 AM

Go see a physical therapist and have ASTYM, ART, or dry needling done to help speed up the recovery. That being said, as many others have said in the numerous posts on this board re: calf injuries, this is not the one injury you want to rush back from without letting the muscle fully heal. Doing so will lilkely lead to additional re-injuries/re-aggravations and more time laid up and off the court.

TroutSc 02-01-2013 03:20 PM

thanks for the input. Ive been resting it since tuesday. Hit some groundstrokes and serves today. I dont want to pull out of the tourney, its only my 2nd one and my partners first so will give it a go. Im gonna wrap em both so probably look like a mummy tomorrow. I have a good feeling, so hoping it holds up. we'll see. Been hydrating well taking my vitamins, throwing in a few vitamin BL's tonight. worse thing that can happen is I hurt and have to quit and spend the day watching my wife in her dubs and mixed dubs while enjoying some beverages. otherwise, between my dubs and my wifes 2 events, i think 1 of us will bring home a win. the excitement of lower level rec/club tennis...woo hoo!

mikeler 02-01-2013 04:05 PM

Get a heating pad on it before your match.

jimbo333 02-01-2013 04:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TroutSc (Post 7185185)
thanks for the input. Ive been resting it since tuesday. Hit some groundstrokes and serves today. I dont want to pull out of the tourney, its only my 2nd one and my partners first so will give it a go. Im gonna wrap em both so probably look like a mummy tomorrow. I have a good feeling, so hoping it holds up. we'll see. Been hydrating well taking my vitamins, throwing in a few vitamin BL's tonight. worse thing that can happen is I hurt and have to quit and spend the day watching my wife in her dubs and mixed dubs while enjoying some beverages. otherwise, between my dubs and my wifes 2 events, i think 1 of us will bring home a win. the excitement of lower level rec/club tennis...woo hoo!

Nope, the worst thing is you seriously tear your calf muscle, can't walk for a week, can't play tennis for a month and end up with a chronic calf injury, happened to me 10 years ago, just saying!

TroutSc 02-02-2013 07:24 PM

Allright...odd tennis today. Managed to fight back a bagel and take 2nd 6/2 and close the tb. Calf feels ok. Semi in the early morning, then hopefully one more. Fingers crossed and calf wrapped.


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