A bruised hamstring is a fairly common sports injury. It is most often suffered by football, soccer, basketball and baseball players as well as runners and bicyclists. Most of the time, an athlete bruises a hamstring during the course of his or her sport as a result of overuse.
Ice and Rest
You need to act quickly when you suffer a hamstring bruise by treating the injury with ice and rest. Try to get off your leg and in a comfortable prone position. You can do this on a bed, couch or floor. Take an ice pack and put it directly under the hamstring bruise (on the back of the thigh) and try to leave it in place for 15 minutes at a time. Give at least one 15-minute ice treatment every two hours. It is best to put the ice pack directly on the injured area, but if you are sensitive to cold you can wrap it in a towel. Rest the area as much as possible when you are not icing it.
A compression sleeve that is wrapped over the area can provide excellent support after the ice treatments. This will neutralize intramuscular bleeding and provide support for the injured portion of the leg.
After the first 48 hours, you can start to exercise the injured area. Stretching exercises seem to work best at bringing back function to the area. Internal and external rotations are two of the top exercises. To do an internal leg rotation, sit on the floor with your noninjured leg bent backward and your injured leg straight in front of you. With your hands just above your knee, rotate your foot inward and hold the rotation for three seconds. Return to the starting position. Do this 10 times. After a 30-second break, return to the same position and now rotate your foot outward. Do this 10 times. These exercises will help return range of motion to the hamstring.
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