The game of basketball is no stranger to the hamstring sprain.
This common injury generally occurs while an athlete is jumping, running or sprinting while taking large steps - which can cause the muscles to pull or stretch too far and too abruptly, oftentimes resulting in a painful tear. Hamstring muscles that aren’t sufficiently flexible are especially prone to this type of injury.
This is a mild pull or strain that typically won’t prevent a person from walking, but will disable them from running.
This is a partial tear in the muscle that causes the area to swell with sudden instances of pain. A person with a Grade 2 hamstring injury will usually recover in 4 to 8 weeks and will walk with a limp.
This is a complete tear of the hamstring that results in immediate swelling and bruising, and is accompanied by significant pain. A sufferer of a Grade 3 hamstring injury will generally need up to 3 months to recover, and will often require crutches.
Regardless of your grade of injury, it’s important to begin your hamstring strain recovery in Las Vegas or wherever you reside as immediately following injury as possible by first applying the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compress and Elevate).
As eager as you may be to get up and moving, use this downtime to rest and relax your injured leg. The less movement, the better! The pain you experience can be managed in the meantime with the use of an OTC pain medication or anti-inflammatory while your body works to heal.
After promptly following the RICE protocol, it’s important to see a physiotherapist or doctor to determine the severity of your hamstring injury and organize a plan for rehabilitation if necessary (this is highly advised if your injury is any more severe than mild).
If you find you’re injuring your hamstring more often than is normal, it may be due to insufficient flexibility. A daily ongoing muscle stretching routine may be the best preventive step to take against future hamstring injuries.
Neglecting treatment of a badly injured hamstring can result in long-term pain, joint stiffness, reduced flexibility, weakened muscles and even the formation of abnormal scar tissue - so always take your recovery plan seriously (and remember to stretch and warmup regularly).
As always… stay safe, athletes!The 4 Most Common Basketball Injuries that Athletes Suffer