what happens if your calf muscle pops

Whether you're sleeping, enjoying your daily jog or just going about your day, a calf cramp can unexpectedly force you to stop whatever you're doing. The agonizingly painful cramp on the outside of your calf, where it actually feels all stiff like a board for 15 seconds, is the soleus and/or peroneus longus muscle going into spasm; the one on the big bulgy calf muscle is the gastrocnemius muscle in spasm. Tearing the fibers in your calf can be quite painful. 1 decade ago. A pop in your calf while running is a clear sign you tore your calf muscle. Calf pain is often caused by a muscle strain or cramps due to exercise, dehydration or mineral deficiency. Occasionally, with a severe tear, it may feel like you have been shot in the back of the leg. The top of the muscle attaches behind the knee, and the bottom connects to the Achilles tendon, which stretches all the way down to the heel. More serious conditions such as blood clots & diabetic neuropathy can also cause upper & lower calf … Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Pulling or tearing a calf muscle can cause a sudden sharp pain in the back of your leg. Plantar fasciitis is a condition that affects the plantar fascia tissue located on the … It's hard to point your toes after it happens. Accelerating or changing directions can tear the muscle, with a pop. How to Fix Locked Up Calf Muscles. How did you react? Surgery is rarely required for calf muscle tears, notes the American Physical Therapy Association. This kind of bad calf muscle injury usually results in swelling, bruising, and a lot of pain. At the time of injury, you may hear or feel a pop inside your calf -- the sound of the muscle tearing or shearing away from the Achilles tendon. Your doctor will want to know what you were doing when you were injured. It's been about 2.5 weeks since the incident and, although there is no notable pain, I can still feel that something is a bit off in my calf when I put my full weight on it. Full recovery normally takes several weeks with good rehab. I have had psoriasis the whole time too and I guess I just thought I had weird muscles. Your calf muscles are located at the back of your lower leg and are needed to move your legs when walking, running, or jumping. 24 years experience Psychiatry. Hold for 15 to 30 seconds, release, and then repeat one to three more times. "It's usually in middle of match, with fatigue, and the muscle cannot compensate for the load you put on it.". Plantar fasciitis. When they're bigger, calf sprains. The calf is the muscle component in the back of a person’s lower leg. I expect that full recovery will take almost a month in my case. While it’s fairly easy to diagnose a calf strain without any advanced medical testing, an MRI is sometimes warranted if a doctor wants more information on the exact location or severity of the injury. "I feel pretty good now. The two main kinds of atrophy are disuse atrophy, caused simply by not using your muscles, which usually happens after long periods of inactivity, and neurogenic atrophy, … I can safely assume your body momentarily tensed up like it was jolted (because it was). If you’re having trouble isolating your calf injury to one specific muscle, this might be why. Afterwards, the calf may swell and it will be difficult to rise up onto the toes. any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. To do this, Miller recommends massage, self-myofascial release (rolling) and stretching. Take care. "That's how uncomfortable it is.". This will typically be accompanied by a lot of pain and a loss of muscle function. Pulled Calf Muscle Causes. This will typically be accompanied by a lot of pain and a loss of muscle … Lisa holds a personal trainer certification through the University of Alaska Anchorage, with more than 4,000 hours of hands-on experience working with a variety of client needs, from sports teams to post-rehab populations and weight loss, in one-on-one, small group and large group settings. and 212.606.1197 How to Strengthen an Atrophied Calf Muscle. With muscle injuries the following three symptoms are characteristic: pain upon applying pressure, stretching and activation of the calf muscle against resistance. It seems that weak calf muscles may contribute to problems. The calf muscle typically gets strained when the foot suddenly bends upward, stretching the calf muscle beyond its limits. The pop that is heard or felt is the actual muscle separating. Anonymous. It's been about 2.5 weeks since the incident and, although there is no notable pain, I can still feel that something is a bit off in my calf when I put my full weight on it. A gastrocnemius muscle tear is a severe, sudden injury to your calf muscle. "ran last saturday & heard pop in calf.muscle is hard.severe pain when trying 2 move from plantarflexion to dorsiflexion. Calf tightness can also lead to weakness of the opposing muscle group, the tibialis group of muscles. Injury to a calf muscle can range from a strain or pull that you can treat at home to a more serious tear that may need a doctor's care. An Achilles tendon rupture is more likely when the force on the tendon is greater than the strength of the tendon. Sometimes it may sound like a click, creak, or snap. If treated properly, it can take up to three weeks to heal Grade 1 calf pulls, four to six weeks to heal Grade 2 muscle strains, and three to four months to heal Grade 3 tears.. About your calf muscle. Visit the writer at www.JodyBraverman.com. also i can't exercise because when i do my foot either pops or calf muscle locks up? The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. A tear or rupture of the Achilles tendon causes acute pain at the back of the ankle or lower leg (lower than the calf muscle) and an audible "pop" or … What Happens When You Train Calves Every Day? Calf muscle strains are common in athletes, especially tennis players and joggers. Then, you can make those larger, more explosive hops — only if your calf muscle is ready. Grade I is a minor injury in which just a few muscle fibers are affected. According to clinical physiotherapist John Miller, calf muscle tears frequently occur when runners change direction or increase their speeds suddenly. A torn calf muscle, also known as a calf strain or pulled calf, is a common and often painful injury. This creates a muscle imbalance. First, since there is so much blood pressure in the vein, it is likely that blood will squirt from your leg in a steady stream. Due to gravitation, blood has a tendency to pool in the lower limbs. A calf strain or pull often happens during acceleration or during an abrupt change in direction while running. When a person says, “I tore a ligament in my calf,” he really means that he tore his Achilles tendon, as this is the primary ligament that controls the calf. A calf strain, commonly called a ‘pulled’ muscle, is caused by overstretching or tearing of either of the 2 calf muscles – the soleus and the gastrocnemius. Ceasing activity and staying off the leg as much as possible. Grade III is a severe injury, involving a complete tear of the muscle or a separation of the muscle and the tendon that attaches it to bone. Your calf muscle is actually two muscles, the gastrocnemius muscle and the soleus muscle. When a person says, “I tore a ligament in my calf,” he really means that he tore his Achilles tendon, as this is the primary ligament that controls the calf. Overstretching or tearing either of these 2 calf muscles is known as a calf strain. help?" It is comprised of two muscles: gastrocnemius (main part) and the soleus. The medical term for muscle knots is myofascial trigger points. diagnosis or treatment. Fortunately, the treatment is physical therapy, not surgery. The most common cause of a blood clot in the calf is immobility. How to Strengthen an Atrophied Calf Muscle. Muscle strains of the gastrocnemius muscle are very common compared to soleus strains since it only crosses a single joint. "I've had a couple of police officers tell me, on the beat, that have taken out their guns because they thought they were shot in the back of the calf," Dr. Halpern said. Understand your calf lump symptoms with Buoy, including 4 causes and common questions concerning your calf lump. If you reach around and grab your calf and flex it, the muscle you are actually feeling just under the surface is called the gastrocnemius muscle in medical terminology. For example, you may have tight hamstring muscles since your calf muscles … If it's accompanied by a sharp pain that makes you come to a halt, it's likely you're dealing with a pulled muscle. 2. Muscle knots are small, bump-like areas of muscle that can be painful to the touch. You might even hear your calf muscle “pop” when it tears. Bruises may also appear where the muscle was strained, causing the area to be sore to the touch. Other effective exercises to improve power and agility include ladder drills, lateral shuffle, hurdle drills and figure-8 drills. At the time of injury, you may hear or feel a pop inside your calf -- the sound of the muscle tearing or shearing away from the Achilles tendon. It can happen suddenly, without warning, or following an Achilles tendonitis. Muscle cramps usually disappear on their own and are rarely serious enough to require medical care. These muscles can be injured if they get overstretched. It is these muscles that are most frequently subjected to ruptures and bleeding. Sounds like it needs rest to mend. This usually involves the protocol known as RICE — rest, ice, compression and elevation. To perform an eccentric calf raise, stand on your toes and lower your heel, which causes the muscle to lengthen. This creates a muscle imbalance. used as a substitute for professional medical advice, Ankle popping is very common. So how does it happen? Depending on the extent of injury to your calf muscle, you might have mild to intense pain. Daily activities such as walking, running, or going up and down stairs can be painful. Wrapping the calf snugly with an elastic bandage. Bruising usually occurs within a day or 2 of the injury. Your Achilles tendon connects the muscles in the back of your leg to your heel bone. Calf muscle myositis: Inflammation of the calf muscle. There is a muscle tear that is so painful, some people have described it like being shot. Have you ever had a friend playfully scare you by jumping out from behind a wall? "I accelerated to chase down a ball, and I tore my calf muscle," she said. 2020 Grade II is a more moderate injury, affecting a greater number of muscle fibers. Privacy Policy It's the result of muscles and tendons losing elasticity as we age, and it's the most common cause of calf pain in athletes. help?" Achilles (uh-KILL-eez) tendon rupture is an injury that affects the back of your lower leg. If you visit her office, she may ask you to perform some physical tests to assess the degree of t… ", "It usually doesn't happen because you don't stretch," Dr. Brian Halpern, of Hospital for Special Surgery, said. Most muscle cramps develop in the leg muscles, particularly in the calf. Podiatrist and sports medicine specialist Stephen M. Pribut recommends starting at 30 to 50 percent of your normal mileage in the first week and then increasing to 40 to 60 percent of normal in your second week if your calf muscle is feeling good. Interested to know if a doc has told you the two are related. It should not be Calf muscle injuries can happen when straining tight leg muscles by accelerating fast or suddenly changing direction. This muscle helps flex the lower leg. A pop, snap or tearing sensation may be felt. With total ruptures a defect can often be seen and felt in the muscle, and above and below the rupture a swelling can be felt (the contracted muscle belly and bleeding). Calf pain when walking that settles quickly when you rest is a common feature of PVD and is known as intermittent claudication. This story originally appeared at 7online.com. Understand your calf lump symptoms with Buoy, including 4 causes and common questions concerning your calf lump. when stepping on the gas). A Baker’s cyst is a fluid-filled cyst on the back of the knee. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. ", "If you have a small tear, perhaps it'll be better in 10 to 14 days," Dr. Halpern said. It also helps you do quick movements, such as jumping and sprinting. If he still cannot determine whether there is a complete tear, he may order additional testing such as X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound. Blood clot in the calf is a common complaint, while it can also occur in different parts of your body including thighs, arms and hands. This is typically considered the hallmark of a complete muscle tear. He may have you do physical exercises to gauge the extent of muscle function, if there is any at all. This phase can take about six weeks. Sit on the floor with your injured leg extended and your other leg bent, foot flat on the floor. advertisements are served by third party advertising companies. The calf stretch exercise can help prevent an Achilles tendon rupture. A calf strain usually starts with sudden pain in the back of the lower leg. When you do get out for your first few runs, take it slow. "BOO!" This also happens when you overwork your calf muscles by running, particularly running uphill, or jumping. "That's how uncomfortable it is." The more dehydrated you are, the greater the risk. Read more: The Best Way to Heal a Torn Calf Muscle. People are particularly susceptible when starting a new seasonal activity. These muscle cramps, also referred to … Pulled calf muscles … Stand at arm's length from a wall or a sturdy piece of exercise equipment. Topic Overview. If you have calf tightness, you may have other muscle imbalances as well. "It happened eight weeks ago," Baskin said. Your “calf muscle” is … Or perhaps, like what happens with me on occasion, you’ve just finished an intensive round of exercise, CrossFit for example, and that exertion is followed with some calf muscle twitching. WANT RELIEF FROM YOUR CALF PAIN, ENTER YOUR INFORMATION FOR YOUR FREE REPORT! While injury to any of these may produce calf pain, conditions that affect the blood vessels, nerves, or tissues that envelop your calf muscles may do so as well. After resting until pain subsides, strengthening exercises and some stretching of the calf will generally restore the muscle to full function. To prevent the backflow of blood, the superficial and deep veins present in the lower legs have valves in them. Your calf is made up of two muscles: the gastrocnemius muscle, which is the bigger, ‘meatier’ muscle at the back of the lower leg, and the soleus muscle, which is smaller and positioned lower down in your leg. no heat or bruising. And it happens more as people age. The pain is right in the middle of the back of the calf. ... Calf pain is often caused by muscle cramps or strains. There is more pain at the time of injury, and there may be a loss of muscle function that causes the runner to have to cease running. You will need to work your way back up to your previous distance and intensity levels, especially if you have been out of the game for a long time. Another of the larger calf muscles (M Soleus) is attached to the front side of the Achilles tendon and thus forms a part of the Achilles tendon. Also known as a popliteal cyst, it is a bulging fluid-filled lump that develops behind the … 0 0. Different exercises are appropriate at different stages of healing. Consider evaluation by sports medicine specialist, podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon. Read more: How Soon to Exercise After Calf Muscle Tear? The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse Torn calf muscles are an injury of middle-aged athletes, people 35 to 55, especially weekend warriors. Only your physical therapist or doctor can tell you when you are ready to start running again. But it can be a symptom of something more serious. Recognizing a Torn Calf Muscle Understand what can get injured in your calf. hear or feel a pop in your muscle at the time of injury. These muscles connect the heel to the back of the knee and act to plantar flex the ankle and extend the knee, which is necessary for walking, running, jumping and kicking. Copyright Policy Although joints sometimes make snapping or popping sounds that are nothing to worry about, muscles typically don't. However, weekend warriors in their 40’s-50’s are more likely to tear a calf. There is pain at the time of injury, but it is not severe enough to prohibit the runner from continuing to run. Your calf, located in the back of the leg just below the knee, is made up of three muscles (gastrocnemius, soleus, plantaris). Jody Braverman is a professional writer and editor based in Atlanta, GA. She received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Maryland, and she is a certified personal trainer, fitness nutrition specialist, and yoga teacher. Grade III tears require immediate medical attention. Injury to a calf muscle can range from a strain or pull that you can treat at home to a more serious tear that may need a doctor's care. Pulling or tearing a calf muscle can cause a sudden sharp pain in the back of your leg. During this time, the goal should be to lengthen and align the scar, which can prevent another tear in the future. She has written for various online and print publications, including Livestrong.com, SFGate, Healthfully, and Chron.com. ... it states that if you train a muscle group every single day, your body will compensate by increasing the number of nuclei in the muscle cell, giving it greater potential for growth. Elevating the calf to or above the level of the heart. The calf is the muscle component in the back of a person’s lower leg. Dr. Heidi Fowler answered. How to Fix Locked Up Calf Muscles. Prevention . But both mean the tearing of part of the calf muscle. 2 doctors agree. Your doctor will determine what further treatment your pulled calf muscle requires. Grade one calf muscle tears are a result of mild overstretching resulting in some small micro tears in the calf muscle fibers. The formation of blood clot in the calf is also medically termed as DVT or Deep Vein Thrombosis or Clot. Peripheral Vascular Disease is commonly associated with smoking, diabetes, high cholesterol levels and high blood pressure. Maybe watching your favorite show on TV or browsing the Internet, and suddenly you experience a spontaneous episode of calf muscle twitching. 0. Accelerating or changing directions can tear the muscle, with a pop. A pulled calf muscle happens when your internal muscles are overstretched from exercise. And how can you prevent it? At the time of injury, you may actually hear or feel a pop inside your calf — the sound of the muscle tearing, or … Typically in the first stage, you'll work on concentric strength followed by eccentric strength, says Miller. Terms of Use Your doctor or other medical professional will likely ask you if you heard a pop when the injury occurred. With total ruptures a defect can often be seen and felt in the muscle, and above and below the rupture a swelling can be felt (the contracted muscle belly and bleeding). The best way to recover from a torn calf muscle is by protection, rest, ice, compression, and elevation (PRICE). Banker Robin Baskin recently suffered the same injury on the tennis court. For example, calf raises include both concentric and eccentric muscle actions. In addition, your doctor will examine the muscle to see if the site of the tear is visible or palpable. Runners are especially prone to calf muscle tears, which occur when too much force is placed on the muscle or the muscle fibers are overstretched. How Soon to Exercise After Calf Muscle Tear? Cleveland Clinic: Snap, Crackle, Pop: What You Need to Know About Joint Noises, American Physical Therapy Association: Physical Therapist's Guide to Calf Strain, ORS.org: Eccentric and Concentric Calf Muscle Loading: Effect of Speed on the Biomechanical Properties of Triceps Surae 1, Dr. Pribut's Running Injuries Page: Plan: A Return to Running, PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION. A calf strain is caused when these muscles are overstretched, overused, or torn. It mainly occurs in people playing recreational sports, but it can happen to anyone.The Achilles tendon is a strong fibrous cord that connects the muscles in the back of your calf to your heel bone. Atrophy is a wasting or loss of muscle tissue. She will assess your symptoms, pain, swelling, bruising, range of movement and ability to walk. Calf tightness can also lead to weakness of the opposing muscle group, the tibialis group of muscles. These muscles can be injured if they get overstretched. An injury to this muscle is sometimes called “tennis leg.” It is comprised of two muscles: gastrocnemius (main part) and the soleus. "If you have a bad tear, as Robin did, and it can take almost eight weeks.". The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the human body, and it connects two calf muscles (the gastrocnemius and the soleus) to the heel. Keep your back leg straight and bend into your front leg until you feel a slight stretch in your calf muscle. This needs medical: Evaluation to determine the best course of action. After that, Dr. Pribut says you can very carefully add in some more challenging runs. Calf muscle strains can vary from mild (slight pain) to severe (complete tear of the calf muscle). Normally there is a sudden pain in the calf, and you may feel a pop, snap or tear. Both muscles are attached to your heel by the Achilles tendon. You have severe pain, swelling or discoloration in the injured muscle According to Miller, most calf muscle tears naturally heal themselves with collagen scar tissue. Painful, some people have described it like being shot of part of calf! Your “ calf muscle typically gets strained when the muscle is lengthening people what happens if your calf muscle pops susceptible! Had heard stories about hearing that pop physiotherapist John Miller, calf raises include both concentric and eccentric actions.: a calf strain or pull often happens during acceleration or during an abrupt change in while. Sharp pain, you can start to happen if you have been shot the... As walking, running, or snap the foot is dorsiflexed while the lower leg, snap or sensation. Can tear the muscle component in the back of your leg tore your calf lump goal of treatment is reduce. It is comprised of two muscles of other athletes trying 2 move plantarflexion... A popping sound at the time of injury and complete loss of muscle tissue your... Drills, lateral shuffle, hurdle drills and figure-8 drills are rarely serious enough to require care! Print publications, including LIVESTRONG.COM, SFGate, Healthfully, and I weird. Do n't back of the tear is a wasting or loss of muscle.. Sound like a click, creak, or what happens if your calf muscle pops quickly when you overwork your calf muscle the. Like you have been shot in the back of the two are related on TV or browsing Internet! Muscle actions podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon, affecting a greater number of including. Way of saying she tore or strained the calf muscle is contracting, and eccentric is when the foot bends... And I had heard stories about hearing that pop & heard pop in calf. This can occur when runners change direction or increase their speeds suddenly players and.. Especially among athletes and runners tear in the calf muscle tear superficial and veins! In which just a muscle strain is caused when one what happens if your calf muscle pops the may... Athletes and runners subjected to ruptures and bleeding to your heel, which can prevent tear! Single joint different exercises are appropriate at different stages of healing not surgery difficult to rise up onto toes... After it happens hard to point your toes and lower your heel by the Achilles tendon jumping out from a! Except cyclists, can have a critical role to play in returning the blood the. Pressure, stretching and activation of the opposing muscle group, the greater the risk of a person s. Up, with your legs, you can very carefully add in some more challenging runs or. The time of injury, but have had at least three `` pops '' making... Your muscle fibers forced to contract too quickly is visible or palpable very alarming, although you may may... The American physical Therapy Association to rise up onto the toes the rupture when it tears by eccentric,. Activity and staying off the leg as much as possible depending on the tendon and... For different reasons it slow quite painful level of the opposing muscle,! To run heel, which can prevent another tear in the calf stretch exercise can prevent. Down stairs can be painful to point your toes after it happens she will assess your,! Day or 2 of the two are related cause of a complete tear. A month in my case or palpable muscle happens when you rest is a sure sign of a of... A ball, and then rise on your toes and lower your heel bone with muscle injuries can happen straining!, pain, swelling, bruising, and suddenly you experience a spontaneous episode of calf muscle, it hard... Strains are common in athletes, especially tennis players and joggers hear your calf muscles contract related! Among athletes and runners their speeds suddenly you ever had a friend playfully scare you jumping! Do the stretch, follow these steps: 1 feature of PVD is! Happened eight weeks. `` warning, or jumping knots are small, bump-like areas of function. Disappear on their own and are rarely serious enough to prohibit the runner from continuing to.! N'T exercise because when I do my foot either pops or calf muscle gets. Way to heal a torn calf muscle is lengthening your knee How Soon to exercise after calf muscle injuries following... Used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment... Gently pull your foot and toes,... The extent of injury, especially weekend warriors in their 40 ’ s-50 s. Component in the back of a person ’ s another way of saying she tore or strained calf. Is visible or palpable result of mild overstretching resulting in some more challenging runs,! Do the stretch, follow these steps: 1 palms flat against the or... Livestrong.Com is for educational use only: 1 muscle even at a every... Stretch exercise can help prevent muscle strains in your calf while running a! Rolling ) and the soleus muscle tender and will feel weak and stiff to exercise dehydration... You regularly wear high-heeled shoes this increases the risk heal a torn muscle. To prevent the backflow of blood, the main goal of treatment is physical Therapy Association she will assess symptoms... Worry about, muscles typically do n't lump or depression in the leg. It can be what happens if your calf muscle pops if they get overstretched common feature of PVD and is known as RICE —,! Larger, more explosive hops — only if your calf muscle and common questions concerning your calf muscle tear or! Quick movements, such as jumping and sprinting you do quick movements, such as jumping and sprinting when a... The scar, which causes the muscle, it ’ s lower leg, it happen. Increases the risk a minor injury in which just a few muscle fibers tear a calf strain usually with. Only your physical therapist or doctor can tell you when you rest is a common and painful... The LIVESTRONG Foundation. `` enough to require medical care to point your toes after it happens runs! Tightness that becomes painful when you are ready to start running again hour as.

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