First of all, let’s run through a bit of anatomy. The hamstring group is made up of three muscles. They all originate at your sit bones, and insert either side of your knee. Because they attach over two joints (hip and knee), they can produce movement at both! The main movements they produce are knee flexion, hip extension, and rotation of the hip through different movements.
So, being a relatively big muscle group, why are they so often injured?
Well, the hamstrings are most commonly injured in sports involving either sprinting or kicking a ball. There are a range of different risk factors that contribute to hamstring injuries, the most common being lack of preventative exercise training and previous injury.
There are three points in the muscle where you can sustain a tear. These are in the muscle belly itself, in the place where the muscle belly meets the tendon, and in the tendon itself. Generally the muscle belly takes the least amount of time to heal, and the tendon takes the longest. Healing time is also impacted by the severity of the tear. Both of these can be diagnosed by MRI if required. Each type of tear requires careful consideration with regards to exercise prescription and return to play, which our lovely team of physio’s and exercise physiologist can help you with.
One of the most common risk factors for hamstring injuries is having a previous hamstring injury. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Luckily, unlike other muscle groups, there is an exercise that has been shown time and time again to reduce risk of re-injury. We are, of course, talking about the Nordic Hamstring Curl! This has been shown to reduce the risk of re-injury by more than 85% in athletic populations, which is HUGE! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Of course, we don’t just hammer you with this one exercise, there is a whole lot of work to do before we get to this stage. If you or someone you know has been struggling with recurring hamstring injury, it is definitely something we can help with! Contact the clinic on 4231 9777 or visit our online booking page to make your appointment today!
Check out our informative video about hamstrings from our Cairns Physio Alyza below!