Stretching for Haglund’s deformity? What am I missing?

I really do not get this one, perhaps someone can explain it to me.

Haglund’s deformity (pump bump, retrocalcaneal exostosis, Bauer bump, etc) is an enlargement of the bone at the back of the heel that is irritated by the footwear causing a bursitis and the painful symptoms. I do not think that there is anything controversial about this and what it is.

I recently did a bit of a dive into Haglund’s as I had to write something about it. What I was surprised and perplexed as is that probably over 90% of the articles I came across on this on websites recommended that calf muscle stretching be done to help Haglund’s.

If you want to have a look, check this Google search. Look at some of the sources for the “best exercises” for Haglunds! eg WebMD, Livestrong, American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons etc. I was prepared to give some of them the benefit of the doubt in that they may be confused between an insertional Achilles tendinopathy and the bony bump of Haglund’s, but, no, they all generally defined it as a bony bump at the back of the heel and advised stretching exercises!

Can someone please explain to me why? Why would stretching the calf muscles stop the shoe from irritating an enlarged bit of bone at the back of the heel?

I did not bother for a literature search looking for evidence on this as I know there is none.

[I suppose some could argue that if the calf muscles are tight that this might cause excessive movement of the foot/heel in the shoe and increase the rubbing on the Haglund’s deformity, but I have not seen that and even if that was a problem, it would only help if the calf muscles were tight and only after months of stretching.]


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