Hamstring injuries are amongst the most common type suffered by athletes of all standards. Treating a hamstring pull or tear correctly and quickly is essential for fast and complete rehabilitation of the muscle. Some examples of hamstring treatment include rest and icing in the initial period, stretching the muscle to increase flexibility, and massage to help repair the muscle and strengthening.
To most crucial phase of rehabilitation after a hamstring injury is the first 48 hours. During this time the recovery time for the injury can be greatly affected by following the correct hamstring treatment protocols. To start with the athlete should use the standard technique of rest, ice, compression and elevation. This is used for a variety of muscle injuries and is important for hamstring treatment. At the same time, stretching and strengthening exercises to a pain-free level may also be required although these should only be performed with the help of a trained physiotherapist.
In the initial period, stretching can be used to help reduce any swelling around the muscle and to ensure that it will heal correctly. Not only will this help to decrease the time taken for recovery but it will also reduce the chance of a repeat injury in the future. After the initial period, hamstring stretches should be used to increase muscle flexibility.
Aside from stretching, it’s also important to strengthen the hamstring to reduce the chances of the injury reoccurring. Hamstring treatment usually involves a mixture of strengthening, stretching and other rehabilitation techniques. It’s important that any strengthening exercises performed by the injured athlete are pain-free — especially in the initial stages — in order to avoid more damage to the muscle.
There are many other examples of hamstring treatment techniques although rest, ice, compression and elevation, coupled with stretching and strengthening are often the most important. For example, sports massage is sometimes used after the initial inflammation period in order to prevent the buildup of scar tissue, which can cause pain and increase the likelihood of a repeated injury. Sports massage can also help to increase the amount of blood in the area, which is essential for quick recovery.
Other techniques that may be used by a physiotherapist of sports injury doctor include ultrasound, mobility aids and even surgery depending on the severity. Usually surgery is only used as a hamstring treatment when there is a severe tear to the muscle. The athlete should always visit a trained professional immediately after a hamstring tear in order to start rehabilitation straight away.