The British Journal of Sports Medicine has graciously provided an embed code for this 12-minute interview with Carl Askling, a world authority on hamstring injuries. Dr. Askling differentiates 2 types of hamstring injury: 80% occur with high speed running (sprinting, football, soccer, etc.) and 20% occur with stretching injury (dancers, slide-tackling in soccer, etc.) The latter is more severe and takes longer to recover.
Dr. Askling warns that passive stretching should not be done, and that rehabilitative exercises should be started 1 day after injury.
Dr. Askling describes a reliable test to determine if the athlete is ready to safely return a hamstring-injured athlete to full competition WITHOUT RECURRENCE. This simple test was effective in returning 74 of 75 athletes without recurrence.
Dr. Askling’s recommendations are consistent with a new rehabilitation protocol published by Malliaropoulos, Mendiguchia, Pehlivanidis et al in the Br J Sports Med 2012; 46:846-851. (Hamstring exercises for track and field athletes: injury and exercise biomechanics, and possible implications for exercise selection and primary prevention.) These recommendations include predominantly eccentric training. The article includes 7 exercises and emphasizes that eccentric training has consistently shown to be be able to reduce hamstring injury rates.
Joel P. (“Chip”) Carmichael, DC, DACBSP
Board Certified in Chiropractic Sports Medicine by the ACBSP
2012 Team USA Olympic Sports Medicine Team Member