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Hams I am

This a a article about Hamstring injury's and what a athlete can do to prevent and rehab them.

Throughout the sports world there is no more notorious injury than the mystical hamstring injury. Hamstring injuries are actually quite common in today’s society (occurring in about .5% of the population), and they can last for months at a time.  People who get hamstring injuries are not only sports people but are the regular Joe Shmo or Ann Shmo (to be gender equal of course)! The interesting thing about hamstring injuries is no one ever really remembers a specific cause of injury (AKA an insidious onset in the medical world) or the person will know immediately what has happened.


The act of hurting a hamstring is not as easy as many may think. The hamstring is a tough, elongated muscle which crosses two joints, and is a primary mobilizer for your lower body. Your body actually really depends on the hamstrings for activities such as standing still, bending over, and most of all walking. However, the hamstrings do have a so called arch enemy in the body.  It is the infamous quadriceps muscle.


The quadriceps group of muscles is on the front of the leg, opposite the hamstrings. The hamstrings are in an almost eternal fight with the quadriceps for control of the leg. The quadriceps have an unfair advantage over the hamstrings though, which is why I am writing about hamstring injuries and not quadriceps injuries. The quadriceps consist of five main muscles in the front which make them one the most powerful groups of muscles in the body. The other super powerful group of muscles in your body are your back muscles, which can generate up to 20,000 pounds of force in a single movement!


As we have established during normal life, an imbalance can occur at anytime in between these two groups of muscles. Unfortunately for the hamstrings, 90% of the time the quads become too strong and end up tearing the hamstring muscles in a person. So how do we fix the problem? Well, obviously a person needs to be diagnosed with a hamstring injury, but after that there are some key ways to help prevent and aid the recovery.


Keys to Recuperation and Rehab:

1) Don’t get frustrated! These injuries take months to rehabilitate. The more you try to force it to get better by pretending it’s not there, the longer it will last and worse it will get.


2) Rehabilitation from a professional will make the healing process faster.


3) Ice Ice baby. Clinical trial after clinical trial has shown that ice is one of the best healing tools in the world. It has the deepest penetration and the most therapeutic effects.


4) Please, please, please, don’t stretch your hamstrings standing up. Your hamstrings are the things holding your body up. So, how can they relax if they are being used?


During your time with a hamstring injury, just remember you are not alone. Every ounce of blood and sweat you DRIP will pay off in the end.


Dr. Smaldone BS DC has experience treating thousands of athletes and is a member of one of the most prestigious boards in all of chiropractic. Dr. Smaldone BS DC is a board certified NYS licensed chiropractor and along with his bachelors Degree in Athletic Training (AKA Sports Medicine).  This article is provided for informational content only; please see a doctor immediately if you believe you may have a injury of this type.

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