Hamstring strains

At Mona Vale Chiropractic Centre, we treat more than just the spine. We see and treat daily things like ankles, knees, hips, shoulder and muscle/ligament injuries.

Hamstring strains are a very common injury we see in the clinic. There are many mechanisms as to how they occur, the most common being running, jumping and sports such as rugby, tennis and soccer.

The hamstring consists of three muscles located at the back of the thigh. Its function is to extend the hip and to bend the knee.

Hamstring-Muscles
The 3 muscles of the hamstring

Muscle overload is the main cause of a strain. This happens when the muscle is stretched beyond its capacity. There are several risk factors for hamstring strains:
• Previous hamstring strain
• Muscle imbalance (Quadriceps / hamstring ratio)
• Poor conditioning
• Muscle fatigue

Management and treatment of hamstring strains varies depending on the type of strain. A type 1 strain can take 1-4 weeks to heal, while a grade 3 tear (complete tear of the muscle) can take up to 6 months to heal.

Symptoms include a sharp & intense pain at the back of the thigh, some initial swelling, possible bruising/discolouration, weakness (especially with stairs/running) and stiffness.

Initial management should follow the RICE protocol – Rest, Ice, Compression and elevation. Following, chiropractic treatment can commence which will involve stretching and strengthening of the hamstring and surrounding muscles. Specific chiropractic adjustments are also used on the lower back and pelvis. Adjustments to this area can improve the biomechanics of running/walking and also ensure that correct muscle recruitment occurs. A rehabilitation program based on best available evidence will also be provided to ensure optimum strength and flexibility is obtained allowing for a return to play.

At Mona Vale Chiropractic Centre, we use a variety of treatment options – Adjustments, myofascial release, acupuncture / dry needling, instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation (IASTM), ultrasound, kinesiotaping and Scenar.

Mitchell Roberts – Chiropractor

Chiropractic for Dogs

On a recent visit to the Sydney Dog Show, Neil caught up with Dr Harry Cooper – TV veterinarian and fellow animal chiropractor. Dr Harry talked about the fantastic improvement chiropractic care can give dogs and how it can improve their quality of life. It can allow them to become more active, helping them when they first get up in the morning with stiffness or even before/after exercise. (Just like me!)

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Neil deep in discussion with Dr Harry

Both Harry and Neil agreed as to how rewarding adjusting dogs is and how quickly you can see the results!

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Neil adjusting his dog Ruby

Instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation (IASTM)

Instrument assisted soft tissue mobilisation is another form of treatment we use at Mona Vale Chiropractic Centre. It is a treatment involving using a stainless steel tool, such as the Edge Mobility Tool:
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The tool allows for the diagnosis and treatment of soft tissue injuries (Muscle, ligament, tendons and fascia). The tool effectively breaks down scar tissue and adhesion’s within the soft tissues. The tool causes a micro-trauma to the tissues, resulting in a local inflammatory response. This in turn results in an increased vascular response leading to a remodeling of the collagen fibre matrix and a reduction in scar tissue.
Studies have shown an increase in range of motion, strength and a decrease in pain following IASTM treatment. (Melham, 1997)

IASTM is very effective for:

  • Neck and back pain
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylalgia)
  • Shoulder pain / Rotator cuff injuries
  • Knee pain
  • Ankle Pain
  • Shin splints

References:
Melham, TJ, Sevier, TL, Malnofski,fckLRMJ, Wilson, JK, and Helfst, RH, Chronic ankle pain and fibrosis successfully treated with a new non-invasive augmented soft tissue mobilization (ASTM): A case report.fckLRMed Sci Sports Exerc.fckLR1997;fckLR30:801-804

Mitchell Roberts – Chiropractor