This article was published in the January 2023 issue of Basket
Korea webzine .
If you’re a basketball fan, you’ve probably seen articles about hamstring injuries. Hamstring injuries are one of the most common injuries experienced by many players in many sports, not just basketball. Depending on the extent of the damage and subsequent treatment and care, it is also one of the more devastating injuries that can lead to a sideline of several weeks.
In fact, according to the statistics of health insurance judges in 2019, hamstring damage patients have reached 5 million people only in the year, and in 2021, it is said that it has seen a trend that increases more. As much as that, hamstring injuries are injuries that ordinary people can easily suffer.
Hamstring refers to the back of the thigh. It is often referred to as the ‘back leg’. The hamstrings are the biceps femoris long head and short head, the semitendinosus, and the semimembranosus.
Among them, the remaining three muscles, except for the biceps femoris brachii, start from the ischial tuberosity (commonly, it refers to the bones of both hips that are pressed when we sit in a chair). And based on the back of the knee, the semitendinosus and semimembranosus muscle are divided into the semitendinosus and the semimembranous muscle, and the biceps femoris long head and short head are attached to the outside.
Because the hamstrings are anatomically connected muscles from the pelvis to the calves, they are involved in both hip and knee movements. As a result, the hamstrings are used to flex the knee (knee flexion) and send the thigh back (hip extension). It also protects the anterior cruciate ligament. It also serves as a brake to prevent overextension of the knee due to excessive force of the quadriceps femoris located on the front of the thigh.
When the muscles are stretched and used with strong force, the hamstrings are mainly damaged. It is more likely to be injured when the knee is extended and exerts great force, such as when kicking a ball forward or when the foot is extended forward while running. You can also see quite a few cases of hamstring damage due to bending the knee and then suddenly bending the knee again with strong force, or excessive stretching. In addition to this, various causes such as high muscle fatigue or imbalance with the quadriceps can cause damage.
Feeling strong pain in the back of the thigh with the sound of ‘pop’ is the main symptom of a hamstring injury. Because of this, even when you bend your knee, you may feel big and small pain, and you may feel difficulty walking. There may be bruising or swelling followed by a feeling of heat.
It is recommended to manage swelling and heat with icing. Again, rather than lying still without movement, it is better to stretch and exercise little by little in a pain-free range. If so, here are some exercises that you can start slowly and simply at home.
1. Pull the knee toward the body to extend the knee (Hand hold knee extension)
The first exercise is to stretch the hamstrings. From a supine position, hug one knee as close to your body as possible, then pull your toes toward your body. Then, straighten your knees as if kicking. At this time, it is important to stretch while feeling the stretch in the back of the thigh. This is because kicking your knees hard can strain your knees and give greater stimulation to your hamstrings.
It is recommended that the speed at which the knee is extended is tailored to the individual. It’s better not to go too far. You can stretch more effectively if you proceed with breathing so as not to put too much force on your arms or shoulders that are hugging your knees.
2. Hamstring 3 way stretching
As mentioned earlier, the hamstring is made up of four muscles. For this reason, it is more effective to stretch in directions such as forward, outward, and inward.
Raise your feet in each of the three directions and maintain the force pushing your hips back. The upper body leans forward. At this time, keep your back and waist in a straight line so that they do not round, and always keep your pelvis facing the front. Hold the position slowly for 10 seconds with breathing at the maximum possible stretch in the hamstrings.
3. Standing ham curl
This exercise is an exercise that can directly strengthen the hamstrings. From a standing position, slightly pull your ankles, then fold your knees up. At this time, be careful not to let your knee go forward, and lift it in a straight line so that there is no gap between the two knees. Perform about 20 times in 1 set, and when you fold your knees, be careful not to use your waist instead of bending, so you can do the right hamstring exercise.
4. Stiff deadlift with straight knees
The last exercise is a hamstring strengthening exercise. Unlike normal deadlifts, since the knees are straightened, excessive tension may occur on the hamstrings, but it has the advantage of strengthening both the hip and calf muscles.
The detailed exercise method is as follows. Bring your legs together narrower than hip-width apart and straighten your knees. From that position, lower your upper body so that the bar held in both hands is slowly lowered along your thighs. At this time, pull your butt back and be careful not to curl your back and lower back. That way you can avoid back pain.
Also, be careful not to twist your body by bending only one knee when you lower your upper body. Keep feeling the stretch in your hamstrings, but do it slowly. And as mentioned before, to avoid excessive tension, it is recommended to increase the range little by little rather than bending too much from the beginning. 메이저놀이터
When a muscle is injured, post-injury treatment and care are very important. Adequate rest, as well as proper strengthening exercises and stretching are very important. And since the hamstring is one of the muscles with a high risk of re-injury, you shouldn’t neglect rehabilitation and management just because the pain is gone. This is because the risk of re-injury can be prevented only when the work of balancing the muscles of the entire lower body is completed.
Also, because of the pain after the injury, people may have a limp when walking. This can cause pain in other joints such as the back, pelvis, and knees, so don’t forget to practice walking as naturally as possible.
In this issue, we learned about hamstring damage. I hope you will be able to know and practice the best rest, care, and exercise you can do now without being too afraid of injury and damage. thank you!