Pulled Hamstring: A Pain Real Pain in the Leg!
Medical Author: Benjamin C. Wedro, MD, FAAEM
Medical Editors: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
One moment the runner is gliding down the track; the next he is collapsed in a heap clutching his thigh, writhing in pain. Another dream lost because of a pulled hamstring. While a pulled "hammy" is often thought of as an athlete's injury, it can happen to even the most unfit of us. While professional athletes suffer injuries in front of huge crowds, and millions more see the pain in slow motion on television, few people are there to watch you trip on a step.
Pulled hamstrings often happen on the playing field because the athlete is trying to push the body to perform to its maximum capacity while sprinting or jumping. For the rest of us, a pulled hamstring happens because we don't prepare for the routine activities of the day like walking or climbing steps. As we age (one risk factor), we lose flexibility (another risk factor), and we tend to lose general muscle strength and fitness, and are more susceptible to fatigue(adding even more risks).