Training the hamstring

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I wondered if anyone can give me advise on how to prevent hamstring injury, I didn't found much topics about it.

In the past I didn't have much trouble with my hamstring, but once I strained it, it remains sensitive. For example yesterday on training it felt like for example in sprints I couldn't extend the muscle to its maximum, because of fear of getting a strain again. I have quite short muscles, but I do a lot of stretching (though mostly static stretching). I've read about the PNF technique that would be good, but you can only do that with a partner.

For one week now I started to improve the strength of my hamstrings by weight lifting (I don't know the name of the specific machine), will this help me prevent a real hamstring injury or can you recommend me other supplementary excersises, 'cause I'm afraid it won't be enough and I want to play top level again.


Thanks.

Icy
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For example yesterday on training it felt like for example in sprints I couldn't extend the muscle to its maximum, because of fear of getting a strain again.
Does it feel like it is tight or is there pain? Is that why you do extend it all the way? If not is it mostly just out of fear that it will hurt?
For one week now I started to improve the strength of my hamstrings by weight lifting (I don't know the name of the specific machine), will this help me prevent a real hamstring injury or can you recommend me other supplementary excersises, 'cause I'm afraid it won't be enough and I want to play top level again.
Sure, strengthening your muscles will definately help prevent injury. If you feel comfortable enough with your hamstring you should probably start doing free weight stuff also. Things like lunges and squats would be great for hamstring development. There are plenty of exercises that work the hamstrings but just be sure to take it very light at first just to be careful
"Somewhere along the line, we seem to have confused comfort with happiness"

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Thanks for the reply. I don't extend it all the way out of fear partly, but also because of previous experience with that type of injury. It's difficult to judge the seriousness, because some days I don't have trouble with the muscle but at other times it comes up again, but at the moment it feels like it's really sensitive. If I'm not careful with my body and run more explosively (at let's say 80% of my speed) it comes up again. And well luckily the last week we didn't had exercises on shooting, 'cause that's when it comes up too.

It's not pain, it's more a tightness, but not like in muscle stiffness.

I'll get some advise on working out with free weights at my fitness centre, I haven't used it before so some guidance will be neccesary ;). Of course it will take some time to notice strength improvement, but I'll keep this topic highlighted if there's any development. If not I guess I'll have to attend a doctor :?

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Today's training went okay. Should I put ice on it or is a hot pack better? Because for some "injuries" warmth is better, to get the muscles to relax.

Icy
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A hot pack would probably help you more. Although I am no expert I am just speaking from personal experience.
"Somewhere along the line, we seem to have confused comfort with happiness"

belija91
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It is very important that you stretch it because if you constantly ignore it and train with the tightness/pain/stiffness over time it will cause your hamstring to weaken, you could cause a muscle imbalance. My suspicion is it is bearing too much force and is just getting tighter and tighter. Your glute muscle on the affected side may become weak because of the hamstring tightness/problem and cause strain on your hamstring and knee. It's possible for you to develop Hamstring Muscle Syndrome, but its unlikely.

Here's what I suggest you do:

1. If your hamstring is causing pain stop training and see a specialist.

2. Providing there is no pain, stretch your hamstring and glute muscles as these muscles rely on each other. Strengthen your Glutes.

3. You can strengthen it providing there is no pain and that you stretch regularly.

One question: How long ago did you strain your hamstring and how long have you been playing with the tightness/pain/stiffness in it?
What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve

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belija91 wrote:One question: How long ago did you strain your hamstring and how long have you been playing with the tightness/pain/stiffness in it?[/b]
The strain had been a long long time ago, let's say 2 years. But since then I easily get hamstring pains when I compare to before ;) of course it could be an age related thing too. Right now I've taken 2 days off from practice and at the moment they feel good, but for the last 2-3 weeks it's been a bit shifting, from training days with tightness, to training days without trouble.

I have no trouble at the fitness centre when doing weight exercises, but I notice a very big power difference between my quadriceps and my hamstrings which I'm now stepwise trying to overcome.
belija91 wrote:3. You can strengthen it providing there is no pain and that you stretch regularly.
Will static stretching help me best or should I better do dynamic stretching? Which kind of stretching can help me best?

Thanks for the reply!

Icy
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Will static stretching help me best or should I better do dynamic stretching? Which kind of stretching can help me best?
If you can do something like this:

-5 minutes dynamic streching
-15-20 minutes slow jog
-However long you want of static streching

You never want to do static streching when your muscles are "cold"

Also if the jogging hurts your hamstring try riding a bicycle or anything that will "warm-up" your muscles.
"Somewhere along the line, we seem to have confused comfort with happiness"

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