Hamstring Injuries; Causes and Treatments


Hamstrings injuries usually occur acutely, can elicit a significant degree of pain, and in certain instances, limit one's mobility. Fortunately however, employing quick and appropriate remedial protocols may ease the associated issues and expedite the recovery process.

Here you can read a brief discussion providing an overview of hamstring injuries, and the most optimal treatment methods.

Hamstring Overview

The hamstrings are a collection of muscles situated in the back of the upper legs. These systemic components play a critical role in helping individuals complete the knee flexing, and thigh extension processes.

Common Sports-Related Injuries

Pulled or damaged hamstrings are amongst the most common sports or exercise-related physical injuries. These occurrences are usually precipitated by any one of the following events:

  • Jumping

  • Changing direction with great expediency

  • Running or kicking

  • Heavy lifting

  • Starting to stopping rapid movement quickly

The most common precipitating factor is a lack of stretching prior to engaging in physical activity. Those who experience hamstring issues often complain of a sharp ache in the back of their legs. Moderate to severe manifestations might result in a popping sound accompanied by swelling, bruising and mobility issues.

Treatment Is Typically Non-Invasive

Usually, most hamstring injuries are classified as mild to moderate and can be remediated using non-invasive treatments. Such commonly employed remedies, include:

  • Rest

  • Elevation. Keeping the injured leg propped up on a pillow or other soft surface stimulates blood flow to the damaged region. Increased circulation often speeds up the healing process.

  • Applying ice to reduce associated bruising or swelling

  • Ingesting over-the-counter pain and inflammation-suppressing drugs

  • Compressing the injured leg

In numerous cases, mild to moderate hamstring injuries respond to the preceding treatments and rapidly improve over a two to 10-day duration. Typically, only severe damage, like tears require surgery.

Physical Therapy Is a Superior Treatment Option

Though other non-invasive remedies often yield favorable results, many healthcare providers maintain physical therapy is the best way to achieve optimal pain management. Said medical professionals believe such practices provide several benefits, such as:

  • Forcing the leg and muscles to maintain range of motion and strength

  • Teaching the body how to move and exercise properly

  • Easing associated discomfort

  • Providing a non-invasive treatment option

Individual course of therapy will vary from patient to patient depending upon several factors, including their age, health, physical condition and their injury's severity. However, a physical therapist can tailor an exercise protocol most befitting of their physical abilities and recovery needs.

Contacting Us

Those who have sustained hamstring injuries are encouraged to contact us. Our team or skilled, experienced and professional physical therapists can help a patient overcome a hamstring injury and resume normal activities in no time. You can contact us through our WEBSITE or call us at: 828-293-4898

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1on1 Physical Therapy - Asheville, NC

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