By Sam Brennan
(BSc Sports Therapy, MSc Physiotherapy)
These are very common amongst explosive based athletes, but there is plenty you can do to minimise the risks!
Have you ever been sprinting or overstretched & felt what can best be described as a sniper bullet to the back of your thigh? If so, then you have probably already experienced a hamstring injury. These muscles are involved in both knee & hip movements. During explosive activities (such as sprinting), they are responsible for loading whilst lengthening & are often injured due to poor control &/or flexibility.
They can be classified as a grade I (minor), II (moderate) or III (major). These can often easily be diagnosed & managed by your physiotherapist. Initial treatment should be your normal PRICED (protect, rest, ice, compression, elevation, diagnosis) procedures. This can soon progress onto stretching, soft tissue release, strengthening & specific drill training.
Luckily, there is plenty you can do to minimise the risk of hamstring injuries. Here are a few examples which could easily be included into your current exercise regime! The more you condition your body and the more you put in, the more you will get out of it!
1.)Single Leg Romanian Dead Lifts
Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions each leg working on a controlled lowering phase.
2.)Eccentric Nordic Hamstring Lowers
Perform 3 sets of 10 working on a controlled lower phase (either push back off floor or work in a smaller range).
Perform 3 sets of 30 secs hold each leg.
Feel free to email me with any questions!