Hamstring Strain

With the Commonwealth Games having just finished up in the Gold Coast, a lot of us have watched the athletics track teams and witnessed the hamstring strains that occurred. This blog will give you some more information about the hamstring muscle and how you can end up with a hamstring strain!

The Hamstring Muscle

The hamstring muscle consists of three main muscles that attach from the back of your knee up into your pelvis. The muscle is responsible for extending the hip and flexing the knee.


How is a Hamstring injured?

It often occurs during sudden, explosive movements such as sprinting, lunging, jumping or even water skiing. Sometimes injury can occur during slower movements that can overstretch the muscle.

How much pain you experience will depend on the extent of the injury. Similar to ankle sprains, hamstrings strains can range from Grade 1, mild strain where you may experience pain and tenderness in the back of your thigh to a Grade 2 strain, which will be more tender and painful, with associated bruising and or swelling present. A grade 3 is the most severe strain you may feel or hear a pop, with intense sharp pain where you can’t weight bear. There will be a lot of swelling and bruising present, where the bruising may cover the whole back of your leg.


What Causes it?

There are many risk factors, which increases the chance of these injuries occurring including ageing, past history of hamstring injuries, sudden change of direction, poor strength and flexibility and no or inadequate warm up.


What should you do?

Initially, you should follow the acute injury protocol RICE principle (REST, ICE, COMPRESSION, ELEVATION), with the aim of this to reduce the pain and swelling around the affected tissues. A proper history and assessment is required to confirm the diagnosis and determine the most appropriate treatment for the severity of the injury.   Hamstrings can take up to 8-10 weeks to heal depending on how extensive the injury is. Manual therapy treatment and rehabilitation exercises can assist in relieving pain, resoring function and decreasing the likelihood of reoccurrence.


Do you have a hamstring pain or a history of reoccurring hamstring strains?

Contact the clinic today to make an appointment with one of our friendly Osteopaths, Myotherapist or Remedial Massage Therapist for an assessment!