We’ve reviewed ways to help prevent hamstring injuries, but what if the pain in your hamstring is not coming from your hamstring tendon or muscle at at all?
With some of our patients full force in marathon training or getting into their groove at the beginnings of the CrossFit training, aches and pains are bound to come up. Sometimes with a little bit of ice, rest, and some exercises you are able to get back into your training no problem. Other times it seems to be a lingering problem that does not want to go away or just keeps coming back.
Normally a strain in your hamstring muscles can be remembered from one single event or movement that was done. It is caused when the muscles are not properly warmed up and they become activated too hard, too fast. This will cause a sharp pain in the belly of the muscle. If you use that muscle it will cause pain in the same area and is normally very easy to pin point.
A hamstring tendinopathy can either be a tendonitis or tendinosis. A tendonitis occurs when there is inflammation along the tendon of the muscle from repetitive use. A tendinosis is when there is damage at the cellular level caused by chronic inflammation. Tendinosis occurs when a tendonitis is not taken care of properly. Both are caused by repetitive movements and gradually increase with pain and frequency. The pain normally is a deep pain in the attachments of the hamstring (towards the buttock or the knee).
The lower back can also be a cause of hamstring pain. This can be caused by a disc injury which is causing a referred pain into the hamstring area. These referred pains are very good at mimicking a strain or tendinopathy and occasionally don’t even involve low back pain. If previous treatments have not worked for a muscle strain or tendinopathy or have only given minimal decrease in pain/discomfort in the hamstring the low back is a good place to start with further treatment.
Posture is another overlooked piece of the hamstring pain puzzle. Some people stand with an almost over corrected posture which causes an anterior tilt in your pelvis. This causes the lower back to be constantly firing and the hamstrings to be elongated and weak while standing and walking. Over time and with and increase in activity pain will develop through the hamstring tendon and musculature due to a weakened hamstring muscle.
The best way to figure out where your hamstring pain is coming from is to get an exam from your favorite doctors at Norwood Chiropractic & Sports Injury Center. The proper examination and treatment will allow you to return to your acitivities faster and stronger than before.