Pain and tightness in the hamstring and groin muscle (muscles at the back and inside aspect of your upper thigh respectively) are common complaints particularly in a sporting population. It ranges from chronic overuse and tightness in runners to acute strains in more dynamic sports such as football especially whilst kicking a ball, deep lunges required in hockey, rugby or netball. To enable peak performance, whether at amateur or elite level, understanding the mechanism of injury and how it can be treated will allow you to return to optimal health.
The hamstring muscles are made up of three muscles (semimembranosus, semitendinosus and biceps femoris) that originate from your ischial tuberosity (base of your pelvic bone) extending down the back of your thigh and attach to the tibia and fibula (lower leg bones). Their action is to bend the knee and extend the hip.
The hip adductor muscles that make up the groin consist of the adductor brevis, adductor longus, adductor magnus, gracilis, and pectineus. These groin muscles adduct the thigh (bring the femur and knee closer to the midline). The groin muscles are often injured with activities requiring cutting motions (side to side) or when kicking a ball.
There are three grades of injuries:
There are varying factors as to why hamstring & groin strains occur. Some of the contributing factors are:
At PhysioMotion, our Physiotherapists will perform a comprehensive assessment to diagnose the grade of the injury and start a progressive treatment protocol to expedite recovery and return to sport. Early intervention is highly recommended to prevent any further injury and unwanted compensatory mechanisms in other regions of the body.
Excellent diagnostic skills from our therapists at PhysioMotion will also differentiate whether you have a hamstring or groin strain rather than referred pain such as sciatica or a hernia that may present as groin pain.
Below is a definitive outline of our treatment protocol.