Updated: Jun 8
Hamstrings- The hidden villain of your back and foot pain.
Many times patients will present with foot/heel pain and lower back pain that has not improved despite a multitude of local treatments.
In a lot of these cases, a tight hamstring muscle group can be the culprit behind this nagging pain even if the hamstrings themselves aren't painful.
Tight hamstrings cause excessive strain on the lower back as well as place excessive loads on the foot, resulting in less resistance to overuse type injuries and increased force.
Before you give up, try loosening up your hamstring muscle group- some simple stretches include:
Seated fingers to toes stretch: Begin with a light stretch for 30 seconds, increase intensity to a moderate stretch for 30 seconds, then a last 30 seconds is your furthest stretch. Perform this 3x per day, as well as before and after play.
Standing toe-touch: This is the same concept only performed in the standing position. This can be performed 3x per day as well as before and after play.
Hand-held roller: Use this muscle roller to loosen up the muscle group 3x per day as well as before play. (get one here)
Typically it takes 6 weeks to stretch these fibers out but you should notice some improvement immediately.
Loosening this muscle group can be a game changer for foot and back pains before you do anything drastic, try these simple stretches and see if your hamstrings have been pulling your pain strings all along…