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Hamstring tendonitis rehab

saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
hi all,

Got pretty fit on my first roadbike & ive overdone it. Hamstring tendonitis!!! I've read some horror stories on the net about this taking years to go. I've got a very mild form but had it 4 weeks & not shifted it. Stretches make it worse if anything.

Currently seeing a physio & starting a course of massages. But info seems to be split between the following...

1) complete rest
2) mild exercise
3) ibuprofen longish term
4) ice
5) heat.

I find ice great but it doesn't cure it.

Any cycling specific advice you have would be great. I've planned a holiday in the alps & this is threatening to destroy it!!!!

Posts

  • This is a really common cycling injury.

    Drop the saddle by 1cm. Your symptoms will go within a week, believe me. Then start to raise it 1mm a week max until uncomfortable again.

    Will you report back and tell us how you get on?
  • saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
    Thanks. Just had BG bike fit that moved saddle back 1cm. So you're saying you'd get out on the bike?
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,601
    Steroids are often effective for tendinitis.
  • Will.CWill.C Posts: 245
    Steroids weaken tendons don't they?

    Hamstring stretches hurt?

    Stretching cured my very mild tendonitus, and just took it easy on the bike for a week or so, but I have no idea how severe yours is.
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,601
    Will.C wrote:
    Steroids weaken tendons don't they?

    Hamstring stretches hurt?

    Stretching cured my very mild tendonitus, and just took it easy on the bike for a week or so, but I have no idea how severe yours is.

    I've heard that steroids MAY weaken tendons but I doubt that someone simply looking
    for some relief from tendinitis and getting a shot or two has much to worry about. Now steroid abusers, well, that may be another story.
    I also agree with your stretching idea. Worked for me and really helped ease what the doctor called tendinitis.
  • saunaboy wrote:
    Thanks. Just had BG bike fit that moved saddle back 1cm. So you're saying you'd get out on the bike?

    Did they lower the saddle at the same time? As you move the saddle backwards you're increasing the maximum distance between pedal and hip- thus stretching out your leg more (and possibly putting you hamstring and achilles at more risk of injury).

    RICE- Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation are strategies to reduce inflammation (and hence damage to tendons)- they won't heal it on their own but allow you to do training in circumstances where you might otherwise not be able to by minimising damage done by the training. If you're in doubt as to how to use these strategies then speak to a physio. A few days worth of Ibuprofen can also help to settle down injuries (but bear in mind this will have a painkiller action as well as anti inflammatory and might encourage you to train when you should be resting).
  • Im Bald OkIm Bald Ok Posts: 146
    May i ask where the pain is?

    I ask because i have a pain at the back and towards the inside of my knee. It only really hurts on the uplift of the peddle stroke, but enough for me to want to stop the ride i'm on :(

    Sound similar to what you were feeling? Thanks.
  • saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
    Pain best described as sunburn under skin on medial side of knee at back. Also some occasional pain about an inch down from where medial collateral ligament is. Standing for a long time can be painful.

    I'm starting the stretches again. Lots of ice afterwards otherwise I flare up. I have only 60 degree flex in hamstrings so I would guess I won't properly recover until this is addressed. Been off bike for a month & now thinking prob best to bite bullet & get back out.
  • dennisn wrote:
    Will.C wrote:
    Steroids weaken tendons don't they?

    Hamstring stretches hurt?

    Stretching cured my very mild tendonitus, and just took it easy on the bike for a week or so, but I have no idea how severe yours is.

    I've heard that steroids MAY weaken tendons but I doubt that someone simply looking
    for some relief from tendinitis and getting a shot or two has much to worry about. Now steroid abusers, well, that may be another story.
    I also agree with your stretching idea. Worked for me and really helped ease what the doctor called tendinitis.

    I think it's more a case of the muscle being too strong, not the tendon being made weak.
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,601
    dennisn wrote:
    Will.C wrote:
    Steroids weaken tendons don't they?

    Hamstring stretches hurt?

    Stretching cured my very mild tendonitus, and just took it easy on the bike for a week or so, but I have no idea how severe yours is.

    I've heard that steroids MAY weaken tendons but I doubt that someone simply looking
    for some relief from tendinitis and getting a shot or two has much to worry about. Now steroid abusers, well, that may be another story.
    I also agree with your stretching idea. Worked for me and really helped ease what the doctor called tendinitis.

    I think it's more a case of the muscle being too strong, not the tendon being made weak.


    Could be. Interesting question. Anyone?
  • As before, drop the saddle or at least just back to where it was before.
  • huuregeilhuuregeil Posts: 780
    I had this a few years ago - stupidly getting on my bike without checking the saddle height and going off for a ride! I got symptoms at the other end of the hamstring though, i.e. pain in the censored !

    Recovery was relatively slow - although I was back to being able to ride at full strength fully pretty soon, it was "niggly" for almost a year after and required some stretching and self massage with a hockey ball to finally nail it

    Rehab. Massage, lots of it! Followed by progressive strengthening & flexibility exercises. You really need to find a good physio pronto, because you will need hands on help with this, hamstrings are particularly annoying. If they're not into massage, find another one or find a massage therapist. If they're not into sports rehab, find one who is. Ultrasound, heating, etc. was a waste of time for me for this problem.

    If you're stretching (or, indeed riding again) and it's aggravating it, then stop, you're doing too much. Basically the golden rule of rehab is working out where your limits are (defined by making things worse) and only work up to your limit, otherwise you're causing fresh damage and prolonging things.

    Good luck!
  • saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
    thanks to everyone for the replies.

    To the last poster - how long did your rehab take. I've been off the bike (not completely, but nothing over 10 miles...!!!) for about 5 weeks.

    Booked up for a course of massage. I still have some mild burning pain in one back of knee when walking. Fingers crossed it helps.

    Going through the old panics of missing the summer :(
  • huuregeilhuuregeil Posts: 780
    This must have been 5 years ago now, but from memory I was off the bike for about a month and seeing the physio for up to 2-3months after. (Not every week, mind). Make sure you're getting your massage through your physio or a massage therapist trained in sports massage and used to dealing with sports people - it's very different from the "health spa" type of massage. A good physio is worth their weight in gold and will really speed up the rehab process!
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