Wellness Wednesday: Preventing Muscle Strains and Tightness

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Loudoun County, Va. — The most common form of hamstring injury is a muscle strain. This is a stretching – and sometimes even tearing – of the muscle or tendon. Symptoms that may be associated with a muscle strain include pain, swelling, muscle spasms, tenderness, and restricted range of motion. The length of time for the muscle to heal is dependent on the severity of the strain and the treatment process. As with any injury, the sooner treatment starts, the better the results will be.

The hamstring muscle group is located on the back side of the thigh and is made up of three muscles. These three muscles originate on the hip bone and attach at the knee joint. When these muscles contract, the knee bends into a flexed position, when they relax, the knee is able to straighten back out. The hamstrings work together with the quadriceps muscles to control and stabilize the knee joint. These two muscle groups must stay balanced power wise to ensure safe and effective mechanics during activities such as walking, running, squatting, or jumping. When one group out powers the other, injuries can result.

In more severe cases, micro-tearing can occur or even complete tendon or muscle ruptures. Injuries like this are usually caused by inadequate warm-up, lack of stretching, muscle imbalance or weakness, and even poor footwear. Symptoms for a muscle or tendon tear include pain, swelling, bruising, possibly a divot in the muscle, and sometimes a mass that has been caused by the muscle rolling up into a ball. Immediate treatment is very important for torn muscles to begin healing and fiber realignment.

NOTE FROM OUR SPONSOR: Regardless of the severity of your hamstring injury, Loudoun Sports Therapy Center will tailor a treatment plan to ensure effective healing and improve muscle balance to decrease the threat of future injuries. Call our office TODAY at 703-450-4300.

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Loudoun Sports Therapy Center is a premier physical therapy clinic. We offer outpatient orthopedic and sports physical therapy as well as specialty programs.

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