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Hello,

I am a 2x/week runner, and also very active with yoga (2x/week) and weights (2x/week).

Recently I had an interesting hamstring injury - I don't know exactly what muscle it is, but I could bend down with straight legs and touch my palms to the floor all day - so it wasn't the main body of the hamstring. The pain was on the outside of my hamstring, towards the attachment to my butt, and I could cause the pain to manifest itself by spreading my legs about 3 feet apart and then bending at the waist to touch my hands to the floor. But if I put my feet back together, I could bend forward with straight legs and put my palms on the floor.

Any insight as to what muscle this might be ?

I took this injury seriously because over the course of workouts, it would "spread" to the rest of my hamstring, presumably because other muscles were overworking to compensate. I just got off 8 days of dedicated near-bedrest in an effort to heal it, and it sort of healed and sort of didn't. It's still there, but I need to get on with my life (and training) now.

If someone does know what muscle this might be, what exercises and stretches might I do to target it ? I would very much like to avoid this in the future by going the extra mile now to strengthen and condition it.

In fact, if anyone can point me to a regimen that will show me how to hit every single muscle in my legs, I would appreciate it - I don't want to keep running after each little muscle I am still missing - I just want to find the sports rehab / toning exercises for each muscle and just do them all.

many thanks.

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You've got me. At first I was thinking IT band...do you think that could be it? Also, your "hamstrings" are actually a group of muscles that when they flex, bring your foot to your butt. You feel a stretch in them when you touch your toes. A photo


I think you were smart to rest. I think too, now you are on to something with strengthening and other muscles compensating. I might also add you should think about good stretching too, particularly if its IT band related. Whatever it is, if there are activities you can tolerate, continue with those and as the pain allows (preferably its gone) consider a weight regimen for all the muscle groups in the legs, and a thorough stretching routine of all those muscles and surounding muscles (butt, piriformis, etc) as well.

I know thats kind of a non answer...hopefully you find something that works soon!
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I am fairly certain it is not IT band - I say that because I have experienced a full IT band issue with my other leg (all better now) (because of IT band stretches)

... and it is nothing like that.

I think it is a muscle in my back or in my butt - because you're right, it is not noticable in any way by doing normal touch-your-toes bends. However, the way I _can_ produce pain/discomfort is by first spreading my legs three feet apart _and then_ bending down to touch the ground. I do this in yoga, and that is how I discovered that that was what isolated the pain and discomfort.

So it is still a forward bend, which is why I was still thinking hamstring ... but you're right, it probably isn't.

Again, does anyone have (on the web) or know of (in a book) a totally comprehensive list of stretches for every single muscle in the legs, butt and back ?

Also, if anyone can identify what muscle it might be that causes the above behavior, it is much appreciated.

Thanks for your reply and help.
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Hello,
Your symptoms are certainly unique in that the straight leg stretch is pain free and the stretch with you legs spread reproduce the pain. There is a chance that this could be related to the hip joint or the joint capsule. Is this a pain that you feel like you could touch or is it deeper? A test to see if there is a hip joint component to the injury is to lie on your stomach with your knee flexed 90 degrees and rotatate the foot/hip outward as far as you can - is this similar to the other side or does it affect your symptoms.

As for a set of strengthening exercises - I am creating a DVD that should be a good match for you. You can get more details at my website.

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Hopefully you figure out what type of injury that is. We used to do running stretches everyday after warming up to try and avoid any injuries like that. Good luck..
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