Recurrent Hamstring tear

  • This topic is empty.
Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 37 total)
  • Author
  • #24259

    Hi onspeed,

    I think that this thread has comprehensively covered the rehab/prehab of hamstring injuries from a strength perspective. However, do you have a specific running protocol that you follow with your athletes during their recovery?

    We currently use a running protocol (which is very much a work in progress) that involves the following:


    Warm Up with gentle jog around the field x 3: initially short strides and gradually increase the stride length as the ache / pain allows during the session.

    1)Interval running over 100m as below.
    Perform 3 repetitions of each level and to stop the session if slightest increase in pulling sensation in the hamstring. Apply ice and retry this protocol in 24 hours. The acceleration speed will vary from player to player and should be within the pain free range.

    Accelerate Distance (m) Constant Speed (m) Decelerate Distance (m)
    40 20 40
    40 30 30
    40 40 20
    40 40 10

    Finish with 10 mins of gentle hamstring stretching and then icing for 10 mins.
    Repeat this with increasing intensity of the acceleration and constant speed phases until player is running at near maximal intensity.

    2)10m sprints – 10(10×10) 1min rest between sets. Sprint 10m jog/walk 10m. Aim is to work starting speed, each rep to be done from standing start.

    3)As above, every other set to incorporate catching a ball / running with a ball and passing / running and picking up a ball / arc running.

    This was put together by the medical and training staff and to date we have had varying degrees of success.

    I would value your input.



    Hi Simon

    this is a good protocol you have got going

    ours differ a little probably more due to distances sprinters compete in rather than rationale of design

    with return from injury we always do a lot of running on foam – because we often find the mechanics of ankle mobility are changed by upper limb damage

    for a 100m specialist depending on the degree of tear around 3-4 weeks after starting rehab we would reintroduce to track something along these lines guided by pain / existing fatigue / tightness and previous training session at each point of the session

    Dynamic mobility warm-up – a lot of focus on gradual increase in range of movement all done at low speed with mental focus on feel of movement

    we will do this for 10-15 mins with gradual increases carefully monitored

    then – 1 x 400m jog – checking the feel of the hams; followed by 1 x 100m at 50% speed, 2 x 50 m at 60% speed – then we do foot, form and speed drills of various nature -around 10 min in total – first run through at drills at 50%, then 60% then 70% of maximum speed – no maximum stuff

    foam running – 20 sec bursts at 50%, 60% and 70%

    then we will do 1 x 100m at 50%, 1 x 100 at 60%., 1 x 100@ 70-75%

    followed by 1 x 40m@ 60%, 1 x 40@70-75%

    and finished with 1 x 10m@70% 1 x 10@80%

    no block work at all

    finish with some mobility

    each week we would add intensity to this – around 5% – so after 4 weeks back up to some 100% work

    now obviously adjusted according to competition needs and individual injury – but generally of this nature

    for 400m runners distances increased

    Hope this adds a little food for thought! Best wishes andrew


    In many cases short (10m) sprints can be done at very high efforts even after H/S strains because of the emphasis on front side mechanics allowing maintenance of CNS intensity and ‘running’ feeling.



    undoutedtly you are right for many athletes! – we tend to be cautious at least on our true sprinters that have very fast starts because of the force they can develop from a standing start – although the mecahnics of the leg cycle are slightly different as your rightly point out – there is tremedous effort from the hamstrings with maximum

    but a good sprinter will easily do 1.48-1.5s over 10m without blocks – a good rugby player maybe more like 1.55-1.60? that may be a crucial difference

    maybe we are overcautious – but we certainly have reduced injury incidence and re-occurence and we did find that generating maximum either early in takeoff or hitting top speed both aggravated injury.

    however we do rebuild intensity fairly quickly – cheers mate


    Thanks for your reply Andrew.

    Track and Field is an area that interests me greatly. Olympic Weightlifting (my background) opened my eyes to what the body (and mind) can do when put in the right environment. I believe that there is always so much more to learn from other disciplines.

    1.55 – 1.60 is generally the range we find most of our fastest rugby players over 10m. Having them complete the 10m efforts as part of their rehab is a)To aid in rebuilding their strength from a standing start and b)To rebuild their confidence.

    Also, we have to be aggressive with the rehab due to the nature of the competition that we play in, if a player misses 3-5 weeks he will miss close to half of the comp. Yes its a fine line in pushing too hard and therefore setting the athlete back but Coaches just don’t want to hear that a player is going to be out for an extended period.


    Hi onspeed…

    just maybe something to add if you liked in terms of your sprinters doing maximal quad training and having the MRI’s taken etc… the narrowing of the intervebral foramen where the spinal nerves exit to form all the lumbar and sacral plexus, and then down to the appropriate musculature can also be narrowed slightly by inflammation around facet joints that then over spills into those gaps.. esp when put under so much pressure from maximal squating and other bigs weight movements..

    with this in mind you could always try and ensure that the sprinters ice their backs 3-4 times per day for the 2 days after the heavy lifting.. doesnt have to be all at once… but something like 15 min on 15 min off ratio.. whether do it progressively through the day or in evenings or mornings all at once…. even though they have no back pain or anything, I tell me athletes and patients how they can have tooth decay but no tooth ache.. doesnt mean you dont have the decay.. you may find that this helps recovery and also get that decrease incidence more to the 100%…

    hope this helps



    hey Luke

    nice comment on facet joint compression – totally agree!

    The only problem we have is compliance – once the athletes leave training — its hard to get them to do anything “constructive” :>>>

    I love your analogy to teeth brushing!!!! … not sure some of our athetes do that either!!!! :>>

    so much so we feed them and water them before they go!

    What about say a 15-10 min immersion in an ice bath?

    On another disucssion note some sports scientists are now saying that when we try and speed up recovery – ice baths, anti-inflamms, compression garments etc – we are actually reducing overall training gains … that inflammation is a trigger for adaption

    my problem is my athletes need to recover because there is a certain volume they do need to get thru! … do you think there is a balance point between induding more rapid recovery and allowing natural training adaptive gains?

    Please keep posting – its how we all learn!

    thanks my friend – enjoy your weekend!!!



    yes – likewise it is amazing what we in T and F can learn from rugby and similar – particularly because you are faced with this huge number of competitions and little true off season

    Apart from a hamstring tear within say 4-6 weeks of an essential competition we do have the luxury of caution that you do not!

    The other one that interests me is that we have true long offseasons

    I dont how you guys manage!! We typically get 7-10% gains in strength every off season but it must be hard in the rugby environment!!

    cheers mate have a good weekend


    Yea guys that is the tough one, we have a limitation placed on us that we can not commence an off season until one month post the naming of the teams for the S14, that means we are really behind the 8 ball unless player’s have done quite a bit of their own work in that 4 week period, for us that means, a Dec 1 start point finishing at lunch time on Dec 23rd, then a break from organised training till Jan 5th where we will have to increase the rugby related components of preparation effectively till we play our first trial which is usually 3 weeks after that, so we have a full 3 week block to get players physcially ready to play, then another 3 week block to further develop players but with the added pressures of rugby loading as well to consider, I would be interested in seeing the length of time other countries have available to them, like the Brumbies and Bristol, cheers, ash


    It is amazing the progress you rugby guys manage to make – I take my hat off to you!

    I do some speed work in NFL (american football) and they have a 17 week season plus finals (16 games to the finals) – leaves a lot of time for offseason gains!

    Some of these guys are true sprinters – I had 3 preparing last year for the combine tests who were running close to 4.3 second 40 yards at bodyweights of around 110 kg.


    We have an 8 week block leading into xmas and then 3-4 weeks post xmas leading into out first bye. The hard thing is that our Wallabies only get 3 weeks post xmas. They also get a 6 week block later in the year leading into their end of year European tour. Not a lot of time to waste!




    Just my 2cents

    For hammie injuries we usually work on an intro to run week, followed by a volume week, then an intensity week followed by a full training week. This is a minimum and the time can be greater depending on the severity of the injury. Within the weeks we usually work volume and intensity days. A volume day may be 3-4 sets of 6x60m (20m build up/20m hold/20m decel). On intensity days we bring the speed up from 10m. I prefer to build the speed from the lower distances up. For example, they need to be able to sprint at 10m and hold through to 20-30m before being able to sprint 20m or 30m. The intesity of our longer change of direction work (e.g. S run) is approx 20% below straight line running i.e we reach 100% in straight line running over 40-60m before 100% in something like a 40-60m S run.




    In terms of off-season and pre-season periods, at Bristol in the UK we finished our season at the end of April. The guys then had a 5 week break before coming for pre-season which commenced on 16th June and runs until 7th September when we have our first league game. In the off-season around 50% of the players worked through strength programmes when the rest were either resting from a marathon season or undergoing rehab from operations.


    well not only do I take my hat off – I bow as well!

    It is truly a credit to you rugby guys that with such constraints you can incrementally add to your athletic performance basis each season and maintain that across the season!

    What type of gains would you see offseason?

    In both Amercian football and sprinting we have at least 24-26 weeks solid off season work.

    Depending on his/her training experience and related existing performance we can get 8-14% strength gains and 4/10th to 1/100th second over 100m.

    An example, but there are no typical ones:>>, would be a 19 yo old sprinter going from a 155 to 180kg below parallel squat (bodyweight 78 kg to 79.5 kg), a 145 to 165kg clean and from 10.5 to 10.3 s over 100m.

    Great work guys – no wonder I learn so much from reading the rugby stuff!!!


    These are some examples of the gains we have seen this pre-season period

    3rm box squat 180-220kgs
    40m time come down from 6 to 5.7
    Body fat come down from 35mm to 27mm (4 site)

    Back Row-
    Weighted Chin-Up (3rm) 25-35kgs
    40m time down from 5.14 to 5.01
    Power Clean 100-125kgs (1rm)

    Max Chins 25-35reps
    3rm Box Squat 200-230kgs

    All results are the product of 8 weeks hard work and these are just a handful of examples to give you an idea.

    Any questions, fire away.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 37 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.