Forum home Road cycling forum Training, fitness and health

sore hamstrings!

pieman99pieman99 Posts: 42
Hello all, need some advice. The top of my hamstrings where they connect to the buttocks have been sore for a month or two, especially bending down without bending my knees. Last week i went out for a ride, done 15 miles, no problem. Today i went out and after about 12 miles or so, the top of the back of my legs started to get sore, so much so that i cut the ride short and when i got of the bike my thighs were in agony, could hardly walk!! They've settles down abit now but still sore walking up stairs and stuff. I havent managed to do much riding recently, just a chance to get out on a sunday for awhile.

My question is this, do you think i've just aggreviated an old injury or could it be something else, perhaps my bike not set up properly or someth? I have to admit i didnt warm up has much has i usually do, such was my rush to get out on the bike in such lovely weather!!


  • mattshropsmattshrops Posts: 1,158
    Do you have a stretching regime? I think most cyclists have some level of hamstring discomfort at some time. I try to stretch every day, and not just hamstrings. try a bit of yoga as well maybe?
    Your situation does sound quite extreme and if stretching does not begin to help then i would seek some medical help. With any situation like this it will take repeated visits to a doctor to get some sort of referral- so the sooner you go the better. The other option would be a sports injury specialist, will cost a few quid, but quicker. Hope you get sorted.
    Death or Glory- Just another Story
  • Zoomer37Zoomer37 Posts: 725
    Find yourself a good sports therapist and go have deep tissue massage.
  • saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
    Be VERY careful with this...I lost last season because of it.

    I'm not a physio but from bitter experience I know what I'm talking about:

    Hamstrings are tricky, a tight hammy might not mean that it needs stretching out, but that the opposing muscle (hip flexor & quad group) is tight. In this scenario, the tight hip flexors/quads pull on the front of the pelvis. This pulls the front side down, rear side up & exerts a stretch on the hammys. Google 'anterior pelvic tilt' & you'll find a few good articles. If you have a desk job you are especially at risk.

    If you stretch the hammys & this is the case (like me) you simply allow the hip flexors to exert even more pull, and (like me!) you can take the hammys past their limit & you get tendonitis. I had it where the hammys insert into the inner side of the shin, you sound like you've got it in the rear end.

    I struggled for months, stretching the 'tight' hammys. I eventually saw a clued-up physio (the 3rd I'd seen, plus a surgeon) and he gave me core strength exercises + hip flexor stretches. I'm now back to riding again, but taking some time to get over the tendon damage.

    I'd strongly recommend getting the hip muscles looked at before you start stretching mate. In the meantime, I guess a few hip flexor stretches won't do any harm, they gave me almost instant relief. I basically did this...

    Stretch & foam roller: Quads, hip flexors, lower back.
    Strengthen: Glutes, hamstrings, abdominals (plank exercise)
  • patchypatchy Posts: 779
    saunaboy wrote:
    I had it where the hammys insert into the inner side of the shin, you sound like you've got it in the rear end.

    As in back of the knee? I've had soreness in the back of my left knee for about three weeks now. Like you, have been trying to stretch the hamstrings but am concerned this is doing more harm than good... will try stretching out the ol' flexors for the next couple of days and see if that helps.
    point your handlebars towards the heavens and sweat like you're in hell
  • saunaboysaunaboy Posts: 116
    look up 'pes anserine' on google. This is the attachment of the gracilis, sartorius, and one of the medial hamstring muscles (semi something-or-other). I had degeneration of that area just as they run sort of round & under the inside edge of the knee joint. Basically, go about an inch down from the kneecap then about 3 inches round, you'll feel the tendons there.

    Reason I flagged it is I had no real inflammation at any point, or any point in my ride where I thought 'jesus my knee hurts' so not a simple tendonitis you could rest, ice or ibuprofen. Easy missed & misdiagnosed as there are commonly irritated bursa around there that respond well to stretching and that could do more harm than good.

    No idea what a physio costs round your way but I paid £35 for a check. Ask em to test your hip flexor/hamstrings and core/glute strength & see what they find. If you want to have a look at home, google the 'Thomas Test' and take a look. Mine was a clear abnormal result for hip flexor tightness.

    Don't do what I did & just get the actual area that hurts massaged/ultrasounded etc. Feels better for a few days , but then as you've not addressed the root cause, it goes back to square one once the treatment has worn off. I'd bet good money something ain't right with regard to muscle balance in the hips & when that's the case (at least with me) it all goes out of sync. Other muscle groups are pretty good at compensating, but they're not built for that & that's when you can get hurt.

    A good foam roll of the areas in question wouldn't hurt either. I swear by it now.

    If you want any more info/very basic advice (remember I'm no physio mind) give me a shout.
  • patchypatchy Posts: 779
    Cheers, that's really useful info. Much appreciated. Core strength and hip flexors are pretty good as I've been working on them in pilates. An imbalance could certainly be contributing to it though, my right leg is dominant.

    I'm getting more resigned to the fact I'm probably going to have to see a physio, as it's just not clearing up. They certainly cost a lot more than 35 here in Australia... :S
    point your handlebars towards the heavens and sweat like you're in hell
Sign In or Register to comment.