Optimise Your Physio Treatment
Physiotherapy treatment is so important for facilitating injury healing, preventing new injuries and helping you get back to your pre-injury state. There are a few things you can do to get the most out of your treatments with your physiotherapist.
Be Clear About What You Want to Achieve
The goals of physiotherapy are different for everyone, and treatment will take this into consideration. It’s important for you to be able to communicate what you want to be able to do as a result of treatment with your therapist so that you can work towards these goals together.
It is essential to understand your condition, as this can help you to make better choices to protect your body and pace your recovery. If there is anything about your injury or recovery that you are not sure about, write down your questions and have your therapist answer them during your session.
Complete Your Exercises
Your physiotherapist will prescribe you exercises that both extend the effects of your treatment and help in your recovery. Making time to complete your exercises is the best way to make your physiotherapy sessions as effective as possible.
Follow Your Physio’s Advice
Knowing when to rest and when to push through discomfort when recovering from an injury can be highly confusing. Your physiotherapist can guide you as to when your condition needs rest to recover and when strength and movement will be the right choice
Be Patient and Have Realistic Goals
Recovery from any injury can be frustrating, it can help to ask your physiotherapist what to expect early on, as injuries often take longer to heal than you might think. It is important not to give up on treatment too early as this might affect your long-term outcomes.
Your physiotherapist is there to answer all your questions and help you to get the most out of every session.
Hamstring tears: healing & recovery
The hamstrings muscles are one of the largest and most powerful muscle groups in the body. Consisting of three long, thin muscles, located at the back of the thigh, the muscles work together to bend the knee, move the hip backwards and provide stability to the lower limb when weight-bearing. Because these muscles cross both the hip and the knee, they are at risk of injury due to the complicated nature of the forces put on them. Hamstring tears are common in athletes when kicking and running.
How do they happen?
The hamstrings are most vulnerable at the point where the muscle fibres join the tendons that attach them to bones. When a strong force is applied, such as with a large kick or sudden take-off the fibres can tear. This is more likely to occur if the muscles are lacking flexibility or neural mobility. Other factors that have been shown to increase the risk of hamstring tears are previous hamstring tears, muscle imbalances, poor biomechanics, fatigue and inadequate warmup.
- What does they feel like?
Hamstring tears are characterised by a sharp pain at the location of the tear. This usually occurs immediately after the injury and is accompanied by swelling and bruising. There may be difficulty walking and a feeling of weakness in the muscle. Surprisingly there are many other conditions that can mimic a hamstring tear, including back pain, which can refer to the back of the time. It is important to have a medical professional accurately assess and diagnose the injury to be sure it is a hamstring tear. If necessary the diagnosis can be confirmed by MRI or real-time ultrasound.
- What is the treatment?
Treatment of a hamstring injury will follow the RICE protocol in the early stages (Rest, ice, compression and elevation) to reduce pain and swelling. Your early consultations with your physiotherapist will allow them to diagnose and assess the severity of your condition. Your therapist will advise you on how long you will need to take out of sport and how to properly rest and recover. They can also use techniques to promote healing such as ultrasound, deep tissue therapy, laser, TENS and dry needling. They will also prescribe an exercise program to return strength, flexibility and control to the muscle, getting you back to your sport quickly and safely.
As the chance of reinjury with a hamstring tear can be quite high, it is important to complete a comprehensive rehabilitation program, which can take 6-12 weeks. In some cases, if the muscle is completely torn, surgery may be required for full healing to occur
None of the information in this article is a replacement for proper medical advice. Always see a medical professional for advice on your individual injury.