Mechanisms of Hamstring Problems;
– training such that the rate of application of training loads exceeds the rate of adaptation of the tissue.
– failing to strength train the tissue to endure the training loads placed on it.
If the strength of the hamstring tissue is insufficient to match the strength needed to endure your training…you “will” get injured. Full tissue repair cannot occur in a timely manner with rest alone. You’ll need to provide them with a high intensity strength training stimulus to encourage the rapid repair of the affected muscle fibers, and increase of connective tissues between them.
Hamstring curls (lying on your stomach, flexing the knee to curl the lower leg towards the butt) should be done in the range of motion, going from the leg straight moving toward the butt, stopping about halfway there. Use high resistance/weight (doing 5 - 8 reps…cumulative total per training session) preferably in 2 days on, 1 day off, for 1 - 2 weeks. Work with a weight you cannot lift more than 3 times without stopping.
1/4 squat exercise with high weight is effective. Use high resistance/ weight (doing 5 - 8 reps…cumulative total per training session) preferably in 2 days on, 1 day off, for 1 - 2 weeks. Work with a weight you cannot lift more than 3 times without stopping.
Range of motion exercise can be done — such as sitting with legs straight in front of you, and leaning forward till you feel a stretch in lower back and hamstrings. Range of motion exercise should be included to increase the length (number of sarcomeres) of the muscle fibers by holding the stretch once or twice for 2 - 3 minutes on consecutive days, or doing many shorter (15 - 30 seconds) on multiple (30 - 50) occasions throughout a day.
Protein (1.5 - 2.0 grams of proteing per kg of your body weight) and vitamin C comprise portions of the tissues you looking to heal, so their intake should be increased temporarily to improve the rate of healing. You may benefit from temporary zinc 30 - 50mg and magnesium 250mg supplementation as well, since their availability in your tissues will affect the rate of tissue regeneration as well. Following the initial 24-48 hour period of injury, application of heat stimulus (5 - 10 minutes limb water submersion 100-105 degrees F) should be used to increase blood flow and energy production for repair processes. Ingestion of NSAID’s (anti-inflamatories) should be avoided since this will impair recovery, and potentially mask pain, leading one to believe it is ok to return to training. The problem should improve, if not resolve, quickly with strength training (within a few days following 4 back to back strength sessions).