Top 3 Reasons Why you have Tight Hamstrings
Have you ever wondered why your hamstrings remain tight despite your best stretching efforts? Lizzie Cooper explains 3 reasons why your hamstrings may be tight in this blog post.
1. Protective mechanism
Many of us walking around have an anterior pelvic tilt (see picture below), because of this is causes our hamstrings to constantly be “on” in order to prevent us from experiencing extreme back pain. Overtime being in this consistent position will lead us to developing excessively tight hamstrings and prone to injury.
2. Neural tension
80% of the population is currently suffering from back pain, and the majority of those people also have some sort of lumbar disc involvement which can cause radicular signs down the leg including pain, tightness, tingling and numbness. It is important to remember that just because you may feel like your hamstrings are tight doesn’t always mean they are the “cause” of your pain. The pain/tightness may be caused by compression on a nerve root in your back and therefore over stretching yours hamstring can actually make the problem worse. It is important to seek professional advice in order to rule out causes.
3. Previous Injury
The final reasons that you may have tight hamstrings and something that shouldn’t be overlooked is any type of previous injury or strain. When there has been damage to the tissue it may never quite be the same again (in relation to tissue density), this being said many people who have had a previous injury will tend to complain of feeling a tightness in the area, this is when manual therapy in conjunction with ongoing exercise program is vital to prevent any ongoing issues.
You don’t need to suffer from tight hamstrings
Lizzie Cooper (APAM)
Physiotherapist (DPhty, B Ex. Sc)