How to Properly Heal a Hamstring Injury

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A hamstring injury can be debilitating if it doesn't heal properly. Find out how you can properly heal a hamstring injury with help from a fitness expert in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Fitness & Nutrition
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Seth Hampton, The Movement Master, and today I'm going to talk about how to properly heal a hamstring injury. The hamstring is located right underneath the thigh, and it's actually three different muscle groups. If you can kind of see here, the top layer right here, that's called the bicep femoris, and then there's two layers underneath called the semitendinosus and the semimembranosus. The most common way the hamstring can be torn or injured is when it's in an overly flexed position during movements, such as like a soccer kick. If it's not properly warmed up, it can just tear. It happened to me years ago. It's not fun. It takes a long time to heal up. It does heal up, but patience is important during the process. So, during the first stages of the hamstring injury, you're going to want to do a lot of ice treatment, applying ice to the hamstring area for roughly about 15 to 20 minutes, nothing over 30, because you want to avoid skin burning. So, you'll do this about three times a day, and then after the ice is off, you're going to want to give it like a nice gentle massage for circulation and let it warm up again. So, that's sort of the first stage that you're going to want to be doing, and also you're going to want to wrap it with an Ace Bandage or some sort of elastic band and just keep it elevated. Repeat this for a good week. As the hamstring starts to then slowly get better and feel a little bit better, then you can start to apply heating pads. It's about circulation. It's about getting the muscle and the blood flow moving again, so heating helps that process as well. Now, the third stage is to start involving very gentle protective stretching to start to increase the hamstring strength and the blood flow again. So, the way to do that to begin would be to grab some sort of a Theraband or even a towel, maybe even a belt if that's what you have. Therabands are great because they have elasticity, but if you are lying down on your bed, anywhere that's comfortable, you're going to place the band on your toe and come to a position that's a neutral spine position where the tailbone is actually anchored down. We don't want to rock up too much and it's going to be a very small range of motion. We're going to start out of the pain and then gently go into the pain, not overly done of course, but just to a place that's comfortable and it's going to be a slow movement out of the pain, into the pain, out of the pain, into the pain, about 15 or 20 times just like that and as you do this and you start to get a little bit better and the pain gets a little more tolerable, then you can start to increase the motion a little bit more, so increase the range. Again, beginning out of the pain, into the pain, out of the pain, into the pain and this process you're going to want to repeat continuously until the hamstring completely heals. Pamper yourself, go easy and be very patient. The hamstring does heal but it does take time. I'm Seth Hampton, The Movement Master, and that is how to properly heal a torn hamstring.

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