Are you experiencing symptoms of tight hamstrings? This could be swelling or tenderness, bruising and discoloration, as well as muscle weakness and the inability to put weight on the injured leg.
Read more below to find out what three muscles make up the hamstring, who most commonly experiences tight hamstrings, and what test you can do to assess whether you need to see a physical therapist.
What Three Muscles Make Up the Hamstring?
- bicep femorosis, which runs down the outside of the leg and inserts itself on the head of the fibula
- semitendinosus, which runs on the inside of the leg and inserts itself on the front of the tibia
- semimembraneosis, which runs down the inside of the leg underneath the semitendinosus and inserts itself on the front of the tibia.
Who is Experiencing Tight Hamstrings?
Because a majority of daily activities are performed with the hamstrings in a shortened position, a large percentage of the adult population experiences tight hamstrings. Hamstring tightness can become a major source of imbalance between the trunk and legs and place an individual at increased risk for a lower back injury.
As the body leans forward to perform a variety of everyday tasks, the hamstrings oppose the shift in body weight to maintain equilibrium. If the hamstrings are tight, then more force may be directed toward the structures of the trunk thus increasing the chances of experiencing a lower back injury.
Since the causes of lower back pain are varied, a thorough evaluation of the musculoskeletal system by a physical therapist is recommended. Based on the findings of that evaluation, hamstring stretching may be one component of a treatment plan directed toward alleviating complaints of lower back pain and preventing re-injury.
How Can You Assess a Tight Hamstring?
- While standing, shift your weight back to your heels, and try to touch your toes.
- If your back starts to round, stop immediately.
From the initial position, your body should be in a 90 degree angle between your thighs to your torso. If you can’t bend this far, please call a Physical Therapist.
If you’re experiencing tight hamstring symptoms and simply ignore them, muscle pulls could be a result and force you to sit on the sidelines of life while you recuperate.
Dynamic Physical Therapy
If you or a family member requires physical therapy, please call 304.225.0910 or click below to schedule an appointment. At Dynamic Physical Therapy, we utilize a combination of hands-on techniques and therapeutic exercise in a patient-centered environment to truly generate Health In Motion in Morgantown, West Virginia.