How to Keep Running With Foot Bursitis

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One of the common complaints of athletes, especially sprint and marathon runners, is how to keep running with foot bursitis, a form of injury in the feet. One of the most common forms of foot bursitis is the Achilles tendon bursitis. This type of bursitis affects the foot and dramatically reduces performance in running. Those who have just stared with rigorous training are those at high risk from this type of bursitis.

Two Types of Achilles Tendon Bursitis

The Achilles tendon is a special tendon that attaches the heel bone to the calf muscles. Based on the definition of the Merck Manual Home Edition, the bursitis of the Achilles tendon has two types. The first is the posterior Achilles tendon bursitis or the inflammation of the bursa normally located between the Achilles tendon and the skin of the heel. The second is the anterior Achilles tendon bursitis or the retrocalcaneal bursitis. This type is characterized by the inflammation between the front of the attachment of the Achilles tendon and the heel bone.


Achilles tendon bursitis can have symptoms of pain, swelling and tenderness at the back of one’s heels, which can be aggravated when running on uneven surfaces or uphill. When you press your fingers over the affected area, you may feel a spongy resistance. Because of these symptoms, you may have difficulty wearing certain shoes due to the pressure it applies to the back of the heel. It may also be painful to stand on your tiptoes.

Treatment of Achilles Tendon Bursitis

The objective of the treatment of this form of foot bursitis is to alleviate the inflammation and pain. One of the most effective bursitis treatments is the use of NSAIDS such as ibuprofen. In addition to this conventional medication, rest from intensive running and the everyday application of ice or cold therapy gels may also provide relief. Stretching exercises may also improve the strength and flexibility of the ankle.

Aids to Running with Bursitis

To minimize the pain from running with bursitis, there are certain interventions that can be employed. One can elevate the heel with the use of felt heel pads or foam rubber in the shoe to reduce the pressure. Adding padding to the part near the inflamed bursa may also alleviate the situation.

Fortunately, there are already special running shoes made to stabilize the midsole heel. There are also shoes specifically designed with padding to minimize the pressure on the posterior heel and Achilles tendon. Other devices can also help change the position of the foot to relieve pressure on the joints.


Achilles tendon bursitis is a form of foot bursitis that can be managed by taking NSAIDs, applying of ice or cold therapy gels, doing regular flexibility and strength exercises, and avoiding extreme running. To run smoothly with this condition, it is advised to use custom shoes that are designed to help reduce the stress on the heel. This condition can improve in as short as few weeks with proper treatment monitored by a doctor. To avoid this foot injury from recurring, it is strongly recommended to practice proper warm up and stretching exercises before an intensive training and to always maintain proper form while running.