During sprinting activities in football the Hamstring muscles can be forcibly stretched beyond their limits and the muscle tissue can be torn. A tear in a muscle is referred to as a strain and, depending on its severity, it is classified as a first, second or third degree strain.
Hamstring muscle strains accounted for almost 40% of Premiership injuries in the 2004/2005 PhysioRoom.com Analysis of Injuries. The Hamstring muscles work over both the hip and knee joint and can become susceptible to injury due to fatigue.
A warm up, prior to matches and training, is thought to decrease muscle injuries because the muscle is more extensible when the tissue temperature has been increased by one or two degrees. A good warm up should last at least 20 minutes - starting gently and finishing at full pace activity. Practising sport specific activities helps tune coordination and prepare mentally for football.
We recommend Warm Pants for providing extra warmth around the Hamstring region.
The immediate treatment of any muscle injury consists of the RICE protocol - rest, ice and compression and elevation (never apply ice directly to the skin). All injuries should be reviewed by a doctor or chartered physiotherapist. Depending upon the severity of the Hamstring injury, the leg must be rested from sporting activity for between a couple of weeks and 3 months.
Alternatively if you have to apply ice at home, the use of an Ice Bag is recommended. This is a safe method of ice application to avoid the risk of an ice burn.