One of the most frequent injuries we treat at the CT Clinic are the hamstrings of sports people and athletes. The severity and levels of tension differ in all cases.
Some of our patients believe they’ve solved the problem by taking a few months off from sports. But when they have returned onto the field and end up feeling the pain back!
A hamstring strain injury happens when one or more of the three hamstring muscles or tendons are injured, whether fully or in part.
It is among the most frequent injuries, especially for the ones who are involved in high-speed activities. In majority of the cases, hamstring injury can be effectively treated by consulting an expert of Physiotherapy in Manchester. A professional physiotherapist can enhance the quality of your life by providing direct care, Deep Tissue Massage in Stockport, and exercises.
What Causes Hamstring Injury?
The hamstring comprises three muscles and they are located in the rear of the thigh that connect the pelvis with the leg.
The three muscles are:
- Biceps femoris
Hamstring strains occur when there are injuries as a result of the force generated when the muscle is stretched. It is typically the case during high-speed running, when there are sudden starts or abrupt changes in direction or when the muscle is stretched beyond its limits due to activities like running, hurdling, sprinting or heavy lifting.
The risk factors for injuries to the hamstring are:
- Lack of stretching before working out
- Sudden acceleration or deceleration movements
- Weakness or imbalances in the muscles surrounding the hamstring
- Previous hamstring injury
- Overuse or overtraining
- Poor posture or mechanics during physical activity
- Age, as the risk of injury increases with age
- Muscle tightness or stiffness
- Poor flexibility or range of motion in the hips, knees, or ankles.
Different types of hamstring injury
The severity of your pulled hamstring muscle injury can be different from person to person.
3 Types of the hamstring injuries are:
Grade 1 Hamstring Injury:
Any indications of strains or pain are not evident until that activity has ended. There could be cramping, tension or pains when the hamstrings get stretched or contracted.
Grade 2 Hamstring Injury:
It is an immediate pain that is more than the grade 1. It’s usually confirmed by stretching as well as contractions of the hamstring muscles. In this type about 10 to 20 percent of muscle fiber gets torn.
Grade 3 Hamstring Injury:
This degree of injury is extremely severe, and often comes by stabbing or burning pain. Patients suffering from this grade of injury are usually unable to walk due to pain or insufficient muscle control.
What can a physiotherapist do to heal a Hamstring injury?
If you experience the injury of a hamstring, visiting a professional Chronic Pain Specialist can help you aid it with the best.
Before visit a physiotherapist and get your treatment, your should:
Rest the area that has been injured by avoiding painful activities like running or exercising. If you’re experiencing significant difficulties walking, you may require crutches. Be careful not to over stress the area that is injured.
Apply ice to the affected area three to four times each day, for 15 to 20 mins. CT Clinic’s physiotherapist will strategize a personalized plan that is specific to the nature of your injury.
After visiting your physiotherapist, the professional will perform a few of the below mentioned points:
Physiotherapists are certified in the art of manual therapy. They gently move and manipulate joints and muscles to improve flexibility, mobility and strength. Your physiotherapist will lightly massage the affected region to promote healing. These techniques help in focusing on those areas that are difficult to treat by yourself.
Although it is common for hamstring muscles to be stiff it’s crucial not to stretch your muscles too early in the healing process. A physiotherapist can advise you on the time when it is suitable and safe to start moderate flexibility exercises. They will show you how to perform these exercises in the clinic as well as at home.
Exercises to strengthen muscles
Hamstring strengthening is an integral element of your rehabilitation program. A physiotherapist can evaluate the strength of the muscle groups on each leg and then prescribe and guide you through specific exercises to strengthen weak areas.
Functional training for mobility
When you have regained the strength of your hamstrings mobility it is crucial to not put unnecessary pressure on the injured area. Your physiotherapist will design an exercise program that is functional specifically for the hamstring muscle that will gradually move back to more intense tasks.
If the extent of your hamstring injury calls for surgery then your physiotherapist will consult and work with you surgeon, ensuring that you receive complete and constant postoperative care.
What are some home care treatments for Hamstring Strains?
The positive side lies in the fact that only severe muscle tears need surgery. The majority of hamstring strains can be healed on their own through the help of physiotherapy.
To treat a strain in the hamstring at home, follow the below steps:
Make use of the RICE formula immediately following the injury:
Reduce the number of miles you take and make sure to avoid putting any weight on your legs if your doctor advises it.
Utilize a bag of ice or an ice compressor to lessen swelling in the first 48-hour period following the injury. The process should be started as soon as possible and then continue for 3-4 hours for 20-30 minutes each time until swelling goes down.
Cover the ice or an ice pack in a cloth. Do not place the ice pack or ice directly on your skin as it could cause tissue damage.
Use elastic bandages or wraps to support your leg and help keep swelling at bay if your physician advises you to do so. Doctors advise using elastic compression bands rather than compression shorts as they can be adjusted according to your needs.
If you’re lying or sitting down Keep your leg up at an elevated position to avoid any further damage.
Use pain medication
Ibuprofen as well as other non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are able to ease discomfort and lessen swelling in the legs. Certain doctors recommend other medications such as Acetaminophen. But before taking any medicine, consult your doctor about it.
Perform stretching and strengthening exercises
By gradually adding in exercises, you will help increase your leg’s strength and flexibility. An athletic trainer or physiotherapist can assist you in determining the time when your hamstring is prepared to perform these exercises.
Note: Don’t over pressurize any of the above activities to regain your mobility.
We hope this blog helps you understand how physiotherapy can help you aid your hamstring strain.
At CT Clinic we have a team of certified Physiotherapists who can effortlessly provide you with a personalized healthcare routine. We also have our very own invented COPA therapy for you so that you can live with ease.
For the best medical assistance, book an appointment with us at (+44) 0161 4597 034 now!