Contracture of the gastrocnemius-soleus complex with equinus deformity is a common hindfoot condition. In children, it is frequently associated with neuromuscular conditions such as cerebral palsy. In the adult population, it is linked to numerous pathologies such as adult-acquired flatfoot, diabetic neuropathic ulcers, and plantar fasciitis. With the medial column reduced, failure to achieve 10 degrees of passive ankle dorsiflexion with the knee flexed and extended suggests a contracture. This article reviews the anatomical and evolutionary basis for human foot structure, implications of tight gastrocnemius, and specific disease states. Operative releases for lengthening, including proximal gastrocnemius recession, tendo-Achilles lengthening, and endoscopic recession, are detailed.