Athletes and weekend warriors alike are often devoted to stretching prior to exercise. It seems logical that stretching might loosen the tendons and make them less susceptible to a tear or strain. A new analysis of previous studies has found, however, that stretching does not prevent tendon injury and might even increase the risk.
The ten articles in the review did find that some approaches could be useful. Shock absorbing insoles seem to protect the Achilles tendon. In addition, postmenopausal women are less likely to injury their Achilles tendons if they are taking hormone replacement therapy.
No Pain No Gain Is Not the Watchword
The authors of the study urge athletes not to work through injuries, but to get medical attention early.