Tendon pain and tendinopathy | Spring Osteo Clinic | Georgia Macdonald

Tendon pain and tendinopathy

Tendons are the tissue which connect muscle to bone such as the patella tendon which connects the quadriceps muscle to the tibia and the Achilles tendon which connects the calf muscles to the heel bone (calcaneus). Common types of tendon pain seen in clinical practice include Runner’s knee (patella tendinopathy), rotator cuff (shoulder) tendinopathy, Achilles tendinopathy and tibialis posterior tendinopathy in the foot (1).

Tendinopathy can be pretty tricky to treat. There has been lots of research on tendon pain recently, and this research has indicated that osteopaths have been onto the right approach all along- tendon pain is different for each person and needs to be treated on an individualised basis using exercise rehabilitation and activity modification. Although exercise rehabilitation is the mainstay of treatment, your osteopath might also use manual therapy techniques for symptomatic relief, bracing or taping, extra-corporeal shockwave (our osteopaths at Spring have been specially trained in using shockwave!) and education about your condition in order to assist you to recover faster. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) has shown some promising results in recent trials in treating patellar tendinopathy (2) and chronic Achilles tendinopathy (3).


  1. Lipman K, Wang C, Ting K, Soo C, & Zheng Z. Tendinopathy: injury, repair, and current exploration. Drug Design, Development and Therapy [internet]. 2018 [cited 2021 Mar 17];12: 591-603. Available from:  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5865563/
  2. Van Leeuwen MT, Zwerver J, & van der Akker-Scheek I. Extracorporeal shockwave therapy for patellar tendinopathy: a review of the literature. British Journal of Sports Medicine [internet]. 2009 Mar [cited 2021 Mar 17];43(3):163-168. Available from:    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18718975/
  3. Rompe JD, Furia J, & Maffulli N. Eccentric loading compared with shockwave treatment for chronic insertional achilles tendinopathy: a randomised, controlled trial. The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery [internet]. 2008 Jan [cited 2021 Mar 17];90(1):52-61. Available from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18171957/

More information:

Georgia Macdonald, Osteopath
Spring Osteo Clinic
2/486 Whitehorse Road
Surrey Hills, Vic 3127
03 9830 7044

Georgia graduated with a double bachelor degree with distinction from RMIT in 2017.  She has since extended her studies in clinical Pilates with DMA and Australian Pilates and Physiotherapy Institute (APPI).

A life-long learner (and nerd), Georgia is happy to discuss the human body and all its eccentricities with you. She has a strong interest in pain science and she may assist you to better understand your pain and how to manage or reduce it. Your appointment with Georgia is likely to include a hands-on treatment; exercise prescription; and an explanation into how your brain is vital in understanding and managing persistent and chronic pain. Georgia is available Tuesdays and Wednesdays. To book online click here.