re-entry; from hamstring injury

How about massage from a friend/relative, or anyone that won’t charge you but also lacks expertise? I think you mentioned in another thread that it would be better than nothing. Could it be effective in breaking up adhesions?

Sure, why not? Give it a try and with a little instruction and some familiarity with your muscles, it might be a big help.

The Ball worked perfect. I don’t know how much to thank you. I can’t believe that really worked but it did. You da man fo’ sho’. The Coach of the Coach of the Coach.

Really thanks.

So we are targeting adhesions in the hamstring.

Joe has a similar thing where we are giving it good time off with stretching, massage, light running, heat, ice… about 4.5 weeks.

He seems fine until he starts with striding, then he gets a dull ache.
Yesterday I scheduled 8x50m stride on a low grad hill. He reported ache after first, I shut it down after 4 reps… finished with 200 jog (no pain).

Are those adhesions threatening to tear?

At this point since we are looking at possible return to full speed in 3-4 weeks, and since we are doing such light work - jogging, striding, 10m low intensity sprints- graduating,
-should we do this every day? (5-6day on, 1-2 off)
-every other day?

I would like to see answer’s on Joe’s Dad questions too!

I was VERY positive about the rehab of my athlete … it did not quite work out, as we have thought. We went for an ultra sound on Tuesday and the h’string has NOT healed properly. Bad news …

He can train at about 90% … and this sounds MORE positive as it might be. To test “where” he is, we did a 350m split run (250, 100). His times come to a 47,5 400m approx. - and he is a low 45" guy.

Furthermore - he is VERY unfit … you can imagine, after 5 weeks of rehab (and a very severe torn h’string). He has struggled to complete 3 x 300m tempo [100m walk] yesterday. And our Nationals will take place in 5 weeks time.

I am not sure whether he will be ready to run a heat, sf and final in 2 days time.

Charlie and others - any recommendations on a “quick” solution!!! Do you think hill running will help? Am I too negative … and trying to be “too fast too soon”?? Do I have to concentrate MORE on tempo? At this stage, he cannot do anything at full speed. And he is somehow without rhythm too … this is usually his strong point.

My programme consists of rhythm exercises plus running short distances (80m etc) at 90%and tempo alternatively. Furthermore he is doing WT 2 days per week.

Recommendations, please!

[QUOTE=Charlie Francis]There are a number of threads on this topic in the archives. A few points quickly:
1: When injured, you aren’t concerned about the ability to go fast at that point so that is the time to work harder- not less!
2: Choose the work which doesn’t stress the injured area.
3: When massaging the area work towards the injury site from BOTH directions. (Up towards it from below and DOWN towards it from above).
4: Rehab running sessions- set up three cones, each 10meters apart.
Run from a standing start from cone one to the middle (2nd) cone then jog to a stop, turn back to the third cone and, again from a stand run to the middle cone, and repeat. Be sure to start all runs from a complete stop and don’t accel past the cone. Make sure he is completely warmed up before starting the routine and don’t over-stretch the affected area.
5: For the first running session, do 10 x (10 x 10 runs, back and forth) with about a 1 min break between sets of 10.
6: Upper body weights should be ramped up to compensate for the lower CNS output from the running portion of the program and should be supplemented once a week by depletion push-ups (max possible till you drop, wait 90 sec, again till you drop, 90sec, repeat for the last time in the set.)
Report back tomorrow on how it went. This will likely be pretty tough.

thanks Charlie,
got it!
your work out we will do on sat. since he had some work the last 4 days.

10x 10m :I assume the pace will be at around 75-85%?

Good luck sprintC.; keep us posted please.

saturday: 3/19
5 weeks, 3 days since inj.

Joe did the prescribed

  • jog 800m
  • 10x(10x10m) stand. start etc.
  • all on grass, in flats
  • 3x pushups to failure.

It was a great workout :smiley: in the sense that

  1. he could handle the stress - no tightness or pain in ham after workout.
  2. it was tiring: he was huffing and puffing after first few reps… approx 75-85% of max effort.

What’s next?
-do we take the distance and intensity and grad. increase it in small increments keeping the same volume;
or more likely, decrease volume as distance and intensity increases?
-how often and what in between.


Keep the running portion the same for a few days, then the rep distance can be increased by 2 1/2m as able (then becomes 8 x (10 x 12 1/2m)

I assume you mean:
sun: do the same
mon: same
tue : increase distance, reduce vol.
wed: same
thur: same

or should we take a day off or something in between?


Tough as it is to finish, it is low intensity till you can accelerate out farther so you can go up to 6 days on 1 day off. As it gets tougher it can go to 4 days on 1 day off, or any combo that is tolerable- usually determined by the fitness of the athlete and his top speed before the injury occurred. (the bigger the differential, the easier shorter accels are on the CNS)

thanks for the schedule Charlie, REALLY apreciate it!

its all I can do to keep from wondering;
at what point, when and how do we go from doing this to lining up at the starting line under the starters gun.

I will report back after 6th day.
at that point we have either 1 or 2 weeks to begin racing.

April is last month (culmination of 2 months) of racing season, before states, mid May. There will be a meet every weekend in April.

finished up 3rd day…
…cut it short (5x10x10) due to tightness and slight pain in ham.
-I dont know exactly how to handle tightness and pain reports…
so I took the err on cautious side.
-yesterday he did a little too much with surfing and hiking before training, so I think he overdid.

If there is a tight stretching/pulling sensation on the injured area, and occasional dull pain, is that anything to worry about in this stage of rehab?
shoud we push ahead or cut it short?

he got some general massage this morning before training.

will start with 8x(10x12.5m)f tomorrow.

Surfing and hiking while trying to get over a string pull?

Personally I would stick strictly to Charlies recovery routine as surfing and hiking in btween may cause undue tightness and undo
the recovery achieved up to that point.

surfing and hiking are out for now! Hard to know what is causing it but the uncontrolled actions in surfing are exactly what you need to avoid. Sleep with heat rub and a loose wrap on the hamstring and see how it’s feeling in the morning

“uncontrolled actions of surfing”…-reminds me of the time Ben J. got mobbed by a bunch of kids when he was injured…
-all these things that happened to Joe are such that I should know better. as first time coach its unfortunate we learn the hard way; from mistakes.
ok will refocus

Charlie…heat rub? Are we talking BenGay, IcyHot or something like that?

Sure- your preference but nothing to hot or you’ll cause skin irritation over such a long period. i like a cream based heat rub like Ben Gay or A 535. You can mix this 50/50 with an anti- inflamm cream like Flexall 454 or Aspercream forte.


would you use this nightly throughout rehab, or something to be used now-and-then to push recovery along?


I like to use it often but sometimes you have other areas that need attention (calves etc) and you don’t want to wrap too many areas at the same time or you’ll end up raising the core temp too much and just turning your metabolism down for no net heat gain where you want it.