How to relax the hamstring muscles
Perhaps the quintessential sign of a thigh injury is when an athlete grabs at the back of his or her thigh. Afterward, he or she may describe a shooting pain. However, a thigh injury can also come on more gradually, as a pain that worsens with activity.
The keys to recovery are severity and rehabilitation. The injury can range from a minor strain to a complete tear. The more vigorous your sport, the more likely you are to sustain a rupture. While there are situations that require surgery, most hamstring pulls are treated conservatively, with rest, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to relieve swelling, compression, ice and immobilization. Crutches may be called for in some cases.
You have the right to help plan your care. Learn all you can about your condition and how to treat it. Discuss your treatment options with your doctors to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. This information is for educational use only. It is not intended to give you medical advice about disease or treatment. Consult with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to find out if it is safe and effective for you.
The hamstrings play an important role in leg flexibility. This isometric bridge exercise is ideal for improving pelvic and knee flexibility, so it will help you become more flexible overall.If you want to learn more exercises to increase your flexibility, be sure to check out our article 14 flexibility exercises.
In addition to strengthening the hamstrings, hamstring flexion and stretching exercises increase the flexibility of the knees, giving your legs the strength to withstand high-impact exercises. You can do these hamstring exercises at the gym on a Smith machine or parallel bar.
The Nordic curl is a great exercise to increase knee flexibility and strengthen the hamstrings. You can do it at the gym or, if you prefer hamstring exercises at home, you can find a surface to hook your feet on. We explain how to do the Nordic curl here:
The problem arises when there is a shortening of the hamstrings, as a result of the tension suffered, causing pain and even complications in the race. Let’s see how and why this shortening occurs.
When hamstring shortening occurs, muscular imbalances begin, not only in flexion and extension movements, but also in body posture as they do not collaborate correctly in the position and stabilization of the hip.
All this, consequently, can trigger pain in the knees, in the hip, in the back of the thigh or hamstring area in general, and even in the lumbar area, in addition to being able to develop various types of injuries.
To do this, we lie face up on the floor (or on the mat), bringing the knees to the chest, and flexing the hips to form a 90º angle. Subsequently, we extend the knee until we reach 180º.
If we are not able to reach 180º of knee extension in this position, with the partial blocking of the hip when lying on the floor, this would mean that there is some hamstring shortening.