The version of Internet Explorer that you are using is outdated and not officially supported by this site. We heavily suggest upgrading to a more modern browser using one of these links: Firefox, IE, Opera, Safari or Google Chrome. If you have any questions regarding this, please contact us.
Currently, you have Javascript disabled. Many of the features on this site require Javascript in order to function. It is highly recommended for you to enable Javascript in order to use this site to its fullest. For more info, please contact us.
The Ax Forum
Muay Thai & Kickboxing Forum Mixed Martial Arts Forum Boxing Forum Fight Training Forum Off Topic Forum
Help Center Forum Rules New Account Registration
Posted: 2011-09-30 20:53:39
Ruptured calf muscle from kicking!

Been kicking pads for as long as Willie Thorne has had no hair! So on monday my Gastrocnemius muscle decides to completely rupture when i was just casualy kicking pads. This was terribly painful banishing me to crutches and will require extensive physio.

It's no surprise that this kind of injury could happen from repeated kicking but has anybody out there had this injury? If so, did you make a full recovery?

I will certainly give my calf muscles more attention through trigger point massage and stretching in the future.

Kelly Leach
Posted: 2011-10-03 13:53:51

Dehydration, poor warm up and stretch can all cause this injury.

I am assuming this is a grade 2 strain as a complete rupture is less painful as the muscle fibres are torn so no contraction on movement. A complete tear generally requires either surgery or a full cast with the foot in plantar flexion to allow the muscle to knit back together.

I tore mine after a 30 minute run, and full stretch. I went to knee a bag and the push off was too much and it literally popped! I was dehydrated apparently :/

You may want to get a referral to the orthotic dept to get a heel raise for your trainer, it really does ease the pain, when you start to walk with a heel strike (it hurts like hell)

Get it moving straight away, gentle stretches, try to get your foot flat on the floor, but do this within the the pain barrier.

The Gastroc is a well perfused muscle and the bodies natural healing process will have kicked in within a couple of hours.

The inflammatory phase:

Generally lasts 0-36 hours. Swelling is maximal. Immediate and frequent icing is essential. Ice massage is good! Icing stops pain messages from getting to the brain and the rebound effect after warming begins creates blood flow that promotes healing.

The proliferating phase:
Generally lasts two days to two weeks. New tissue, including scar tissue, is being laid down that needs to be re-modelled, this is why it is important to stretch and massage the scar tissue to prevent shortening or bulking.

The remodeling phase:
Generally last two to six weeks. An example of this phase is tendons being re-shaped. The aim is to prevent the cycle of re-injury that occurs if too much is attempted too soon.

It was 9 weeks before I could comfortably use my leg although, back training was different, skipping, burpees and box jumps were too much for the calf and the pain I felt was a warning to stop!

I had physio through work and was down to using 1 elbow crutch with 7 days.

Also they should measure your calf and give you a compression bandage to help disburse the fluid that's building up.

Good luck :)
Phil Glover
Posted: 2011-10-06 10:32:40
I'm glad someone has put this subject up as a couple of year ago I was just 10 minutes into teaching a two hour seminar on Muay Thai and was demonstrating how to kick with the front leg by skipping and bouncing off the ball of the foot. I suddenly felt like I'd been shot in the back of my calf it was so painful and I had to get through almost two hours of showing people how to kick and knee,etc luckily one of my students was there to demonstrate for me!
I must admit that on this occasion I did'nt stretch properly before I started but still stretched for ten minutes at the beginning of my seminar,in all my 30 plus years of kicking bags and Thai pads,etc this was the first time I'd suffered with my calf.
I always have a good 10-15 minute stretch before any form of training but I do find that even when we all warm up and stretch that things can still go wrong.
One of my students has just started having problems with his calf from kicking the Thai pads so the advice given by 'Kelly' above will be very useful for now and in the future.
Luckily for me my calf injury was'nt bad as yours 'ashilto' but I could'nt walk too good for weeks and was out of action with kicks for about 2-3 months,since then my kicking has been back to normal so I wish you a speedy recovery!...Phil
Posted: 2011-10-07 20:07:15
Posted: 2011-10-07 20:13:00
Kelly that is a fantastic post! Very informative and helpfull, thank you. Its two weeks on for me and i still cannot weight bear on my foot. It is a complete rupture of the "Head of the Gastrocnemius" and trust me it's painfull and very debilatating!

I am waiting for the first physio appointment...and phil: 2-3 months off from kicking with your level of tear??? I think i may never kick again!!! Bad times.

I reiterate for anyone out attention to your calfs! They are the predominent muscle involved in most of your techniques, hence they get some hammer and require some TLC.

Phil Glover
Posted: 2011-10-09 13:48:47
I most definitely agree with 'ashlito' look after those calfs especially if you do a lot of rounds pounding those bags with your shins or even knees for that matter!,many a time I have hit the Thai pads as hard as I can for a few rounds and then worked on other areas such as boxing or clinching forgetting how much work I have done on the legs and not stretching afterwards only to wake up the day after with aching calfs from the constant pounding and impact made on the bags or pads. I do feel it important to make sure you have a good stretch after as well as before your workout to lessen the risk of damaged muscles,if you do Muay Thai there is a lot more impact and stress in the calf area due to the powerful kicks used so be very careful.Even a few rounds of kneeing creates stress on the calfs because you are constantly on the balls of your feet and again the impact created by the knees pounding on the bags or pads will tighten those important muscles!
'ashlito' I hope you do not give up and you eventually get back to kicking again it's so frustrating not being able to train properly!
Kelly Leach
Posted: 2011-10-10 09:15:24
Hi, Have a look at a physio site on Gastrocnemius strains, a complete rupture (grade 3) will be LESS painful as you will tear the muscle away from its origin, the medial head attaches to the medial (inner) part of femur, lateral head on the outer part of the femur. A grade 2 means some of the muscle fibres are still attached to its origin or to the other part of the muscle, so every time you move your foot, the muscle stretches.

It crosses two joints but the main function is to plantarflex the ankle and flex the knee.

Mine tore right in the muscle belly, felt like someone had pelted something at me, and in the middle of virgin gym I looked like a right idiot yelling out as I lowered myself to the floor :/

It is important to start the deep tissue massage as you don't want the muscle shortening and healing in this way.

When is your physio appointment? they seem to be leaving it a little late if your injury is already 2 weeks! Did you go to A&E and did they mention a physio referral as this should have been filled in and sent to the out patients dept within 24 hrs. They then either phone you with an appointment or send you a letter to opt in to rehab.

I worked in the physio team so was seen straight away, but I knew as I could not get my heel to the ground I would need an insert from orthotics. This is another thing they should have offered you. I was advised by my physio to wear heels as it is more comfortable than flats but unless your into that sort of thing I doubt you will find that helpful :( The inserts are in different sizes, the orthotist will observe you walking bare foot and measure the distance from floor to foot and give you the correct insert which you peel a layer off every few days to gradually lower your foot.

Have you been doing any stretches and massage on yourself? The healing of this injury varies in each person and mine was a bitch to heal! My bruising took a week to come out and pool around my ankle joint hence the importance of keeping the leg moving to help disburse the built up fluid. Measure your calf and go and buy a compression bandage, they come in different sizes, you will prob need a D or E double length and enough to cover your ankle and full calf area.

email me if you need some advice on stretching the muscle and I will forward you some I have kel3jw'at'

Hope I wasn't waffling too much there!

K :)
Kelly Leach
Posted: 2011-10-10 15:29:58

This was about 5 days following my injury, bruising just starting to come out.
Kelly Leach
Posted: 2011-10-10 15:31:01

This was about 8 days following my injury, bruising fully out! Pretty colours :/
Posted: 2011-10-13 00:52:07
Ooohh Kelly that bruising looks bad ass! I still cant walk, physio has been alot less than hands on, plus i've only seen them once! I think its time to dip inot the funds and locate one myself.
Posted: 2011-10-16 12:45:38
well i was doing well until i re-ruptured my muscle carrying a tray at work :( I was going down the stairs with a tray of cups when it popped was messy and painfull and has put me back! Plus i will have more scar tissue now. Entirely my own fault though as i got too confident and ignored the physio's advice to still maintain using one crutch.

Seems like one of those injury's that let you feel your doing better than you are...then boom!
Kelly Leach
Posted: 2011-10-16 17:10:31
Email me and I will send you a program. I am a 2nd yr physio student and have 10 yrs experience in the NHS.

It sounds like your injry has been poorly managed to be honest.

K :)
Posted: 2011-10-18 08:35:19
wow. to tear a muscle as dense as the gastro takes a fair bit , but tbh i think people understimate how much it is used in the thai kick- i am talking about the base/back leg- a huge and sudden push up and turn driving the entire weight and force of a fast moving leg , countracted by the force and weight of a turning upper body is a very explosive move for any muscle and the thai kick being different to other kicks, is one of the reasons i think thai boxers have such well developed gastros compared to the rest of their bodies and in comparison to other kicking martial arts
Posted: 2011-10-31 14:04:33

Get well soon.
Posted: 2012-09-25 11:52:53
hi just had the same injury as this.. doing knees, pushed off the floor and pop! - shouted very loudly and fell to the floor. Bruising is exactly the same as Kelly had, just wondering what I can do to help recovery and how long till im back training? cheers
Kelly Leach
Posted: 2012-10-02 04:57:26
Hi K1ckboxer.

Massage it as much as possible to help break down scar tissue, see if you can get on instep (see my essay above) for your footwear so the gastroc/soleus muscle isnt on a full stretch and a compression bandage will help.

If you havent already done so, i would go to the drop in centre, and get a self referral to physio.

Mine was a bad tear and took about 8 weeks for me to start training but it wasnt strong enough for alot of the moves and exercises associated with the sport and i had to adapt.

Good luck!
K :)
Posted: 2012-10-03 02:50:08
Ok thanks for that Kelly x
Javascript is disabled in your browser. Please turn on Javascript to post messages.
Post your message
Name: Forget your password?
Password: Save password
Attach Picture:
Link to picture:

Create Topic

Password: Forget your password?
Topic name:
Create in:

Search Forum

Search topics for keywords: