Reoccuring Hamstring Injury in Sprinter

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    S McLean on #18440

    A little background: I’m a high school runner in the summer of my Junior Year. I run the 400m runner. I have a history of being…injury prone. The common places of interest being hamstring, hip, and ankles. This evening, I walked home with what felt like yet another hamstring tear after a set of 70% sprints at my summer track club. On the way home, it occured to me that I’ve had this problem since my very first year of running; seventh grade. However, it was not as much a certainty (that any amount of high intensity sprinting will result in a tear) and it took much less time to heal. That was 7th grade. In 8th grade, I struggled with the hip injury which my doctor speculated was a slightly peeling away of certain ligaments from the bone. The hamstring injury didn’t rear its head again until the spring of my freshman year. After an indoor season running through the hip injury (only nagging), I came to out door and around early April, it tore on an all-out sprint. I haven’t been able to do all-outs since. Last June, I returned to that same summer track program and once again, by July, the hamstring re-tore. I had some peace until January of this year, my sophomore year, where I suffered a stress fracture. Likely the result of my legs acclimatizing badly to the more distance oriented workout regimen my coach had designed to accommodate my hamstring. This stress-fracture kept me out until April. I returned in mid April and the Hamstring retore a week thereafter. Foolishly, as soon as the pain was gone, I returned in Early May to have it tear yet again. I went to the doctor each time, being prescribed mostly pain-killers and muscle relaxers. Quite frankly, that fact has me at the end of my rope. No surprise that today…yet another tear. Surgery, therapy. I’ve hoped for one of the two for the longest and it appears that after my vacation (5 weeks in Jamaica), I’ll be on the road to one of the two. How do I go about getting back to where I was? I’m not inexpendable. I know that. Nobody is. But I know had far more potential than this and it being my junior year, a repeat of my sophomore year in terms of health could mean that whatever doors track might have opened as far as higher education, are void. That aside, its humiliating. The medical aspect aside, how should I adjust my training when I return, assuming I will ever reach a point where my hamstring is not a worry?

    aj5474 on #116729

    I had a lot of those problems as well starting my junior year in HS through my Sophomore year in college (I was forced to sit out senior year and freshmen year). For me, all of those problems were linked with my sprint mechanics. I had too many “backside” tendencies such as but-kicking and running with my feet behind me instead of underneath me. Once I left my university team for a better coach, we worked for months on developing a proper “hips high” running form where my feet fell beneath my center of mass instead of behind. Once the changes began to take hold, I saw the hamstring injuries disappear along with the jumper’s knee that had bothered my for years. I also go a lot faster. Running with “backside mechanics” places more stress on the hamstrings and can result in frequent injuries. I’m no expert, but this is what my experience has been.

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