I have a client who injured her hamstring from overstretching. it has been a month and she still suffers from discomfort. What do you do for this type of injury, and generally how long should it take to heal. It is virtually impossible to avoid using it or working it without cutting out lower body and cardio. She does tabatas and pilates as well as body wt training
Hamstring injuries are especially difficult to overcome for the reason stated in the description. We use them in all movements involving the legs. They slow down the forward swing of the lower leg eccentrically during most movements that propel the body forward. And they are not intended to handle heavy loads compared to the quads. Often the quads are trained to a greater extent and can easily over power the hamstrings when put into a situation such as sprinting or planting and exploding forward.
The best chance of rehabilitating the hamstrings requires that the injury be allowed to properly heal before beginning any program. This requires rest and inflammatory reduction. Only a physician can prescribe pharmacueticals, but the client can use ice every night to reduce the inflammation from the day before going to bed. Fitness pros are split on the effectiveness of ice after 48 hours from the initial acute injury, but the use of the muscles all day will re-initiate the injury process and ice is one of the most effective ways to reduce inflamation. Once the level of discomfort is significantly reduced, ROM improvement is the next step. All efforts must be made to not re-injure the damaged tissue and progress will be slow. After ROM is restored, slow progression of resistance training can begin. Regression is absolutely necessary if the hamstring begins to tighten and/or become sore/painful.
Most Personal Trainers are not knowledgeable enough to work with this type of client safely and effectively. Refer these clients to other fitness professionals if you do not feel upto helping them through their recovery.
I would suggest seeing a Sport Physician. I’m a Sport Therapist-stretching type injuries to the hamstring differ from the typical sprinting type injuries in that typically involve the lateral hamstring (biceps femoris). This ‘stretch injury’ typically involves the proximal free tendon of the semimembranous (inside and near the origin) hamstring muscle. Often the quadratus femoris (deep hip rotator) is involved. In my clinical practice, this is a prolonged rehabilitation. Not a lot of pain but often takes 3 times the length of time to resolve relative to the sprinting injury types. See the work of Carl Askling for greater details.
I agree with the others who have suggested getting it checked out by her primary care physician .
I would suggest she asks her doctor if massage and acupuncture are viable
I would also suggest once you do resume training you switch her program to accommodate her needs .
Weight training, stationary bike , swimming , along with guidelines from her physical therapist are my suggestions .
A hamstring injury takes time to heal despite if it is a grade 1 to 3. Typically you don’t injure your hamstring from overstretching. It is caused be rapid acceleration or deceleration as seenin sports such as Rugby and Asutralian Rules Football. Not only did I see this during my post graduate master’s in Australia, but is what the research states.
Grade 1 hamstring injuries take usually 4 weeks
Grade 2 injuries take usually 4-8 weeks and grade 3 8-12 weeks per the research
The client needs slow integration of exercise with using recumbent bike for circulation, increasing blood flow, etc. Massage with the trained professional can be extremely effective. With also using aqua therapy as walking in the water progressing to light swimming and then using eliptical machine. Strengthening should also focus on glute med, min and max as they all stabilize around the hip. When appropriate, also introduce yoga and pilates. Don’t forget gentle stretching post exercise
I hope this helps.