Calf and achilles issues are very common in those people who are involved in active pursuits. These pursuits aren’t necessarily sport but can be related to walking or gardening i.e. Any activity that uses the calf muscles.
The other big area that can cause calf issues is footwear e.g. Wellington Boots and the root of all evil – flip flops. These types of footwear can also bring on Plantar Fasciitis. Flip Flops are not designed to be used to walk around in and should be used sparingly – in the shower or to walk from the beach to the car providing it is less that 50 metres (If more change into trainers or walk bare foot – providing it is appropriate). Even fit flops and other derivations are not great and the key thing with all these types of footwear is that they don’t provide structure to the foot and as a result cause you to overuse your calf muscles.
All sports carry the risk of calf issues but the following 2 from my experience are common causes.
Netball is an interesting one however I have seen a lot of achilles/calf issues caused by netball which is down to the quick, sharp movements combined with quick and sudden breaking.
One thing I want to dispel is the fact that the calf and the achilles are separate structures. The achilles is part of the same muscle group as the calf muscles specifically the Gastrocnemius (Gastroc) and Soleus. The achilles tendon is the part of the calf muscle that attaches to the heel of the foot.