Leg Maintenance: Protecting your Quads and also Hamstrings

by Dr. Dan Davis on January 12, 2015 officials

Q: The prominence of stretching and maintaining healthy and balanced leg muscle is paramount for officials. What leg muscles require appropriate maintenance so that we deserve to run well on the court or field?

A: In addition to calves, there room two other vital sets that muscles: quadriceps – or "quads" – and the hamstrings.

You are watching: When the quadriceps contract what also must happen at the same time?

Q: could you explain these muscles and also what lock do?

A: The quadriceps room a set of four muscles (hence the name: "quads") along the prior of the thigh. Lock come with each other to form the patella tendon which essentially holds the kneecap inside a groove in your thigh bone (the femur), i m sorry by the means is the strongest bone in her body.

These room the muscle that carry your legs up and also down once you are running up and down the court. The hamstring is composed of three muscles top top the behind of the thigh. They prolong from the hip down right into the knee. They revolve your knee in and out and try to save your leg relocating straight when balancing each various other out. The quadriceps and hamstrings work-related together to move your leg. When you bend her leg, the hamstring muscles contract and the quads relax.

Conversely, once you straighten your leg, the quads contract and also the hamstring muscle relax. It"s a little bit of a balancing act and ideally one collection of muscles isn"t weaker than the other. Otherwise a strain could happen, or worse.

Another potential byproduct of weak of thigh muscles is patella tendonitis. Weak is commonly the result of poor exercise, i m sorry underscores the require for you to gain yourself in shape well prior to the season starts.

Q: What are the potential injuries to which quadriceps and hamstrings space susceptible?

A: Strains room one possibility and also I"ll obtain to that shortly. Mouse are more common than pulls or strains and also are an ext common because that hamstrings 보다 for quads. As with most muscle cramps, lock usually an outcome from inadequate hydration. So, drink adequate fluids and remember that water and calcium are both essential to have in her body. A muscle strain or traction is an additional possibility. Hopefully if friend incur together an injury, it’s only a traction or strain the muscle and also not a tear.

Certain components increase your risk for a pulled hamstring or quad. One is age – the older girlfriend are, the more prone you room to a pull. Another factor is a vault injury, which greatly increases the hazard of future damage.

The 3rd factor is simply a absence of flexibility, due mainly to fail to correctly stretch the muscle beforehand. Vice versa, the better the adaptability of these muscles, the much less prone they room to injury. I"ve written and also talked generally to you about the prominence of appropriately stretching her calf muscles. That"s no less important for quads and hamstrings.

The an ext severe injury is a tear of hamstrings or quadriceps muscles. There room various degrees of tears. In fact, occasionally a "pull" is yes, really a tear.

Q: What have to you execute if you suffer a pull, strain, or tear of any kind of thigh muscles?

A: It’s essential to apply treatment automatically if such an injury wake up – starting with rest, then ice cream or some various other cold therapy, and then compression and elevation the the leg. If you space planning come play v a strained hamstring, you should wrap it v an ACE bandage prior to going top top the court. Even prior to that, use some type of freeze liniment – such as Bio-Freeze – and also then wrap through the ACE bandage. Or, stay compression shorts that administer a same amount the compression.

A tear, however, is a more serious injury and also may require an MRI to identify the extent of the injury. A minor tear might take a minimum of 3 to 6 weeks to begin to heal and also up to three months to totally heal. A significant tear could require a surgical repair, which might take three to six months come heal before you could return to the court. The is a powerful reason to try and stop or avoid tears at every costs.

Q: How have the right to you stop or at the very least reduce the probability of incurring a quad or hamstring pull or tear?

A: It all comes under to proper stretching techniques. Unfortunately many of our colleagues carry out not stretch properly, or if they carry out stretch properly, they don"t big often sufficient to obtain the quads and also hamstrings sufficiently versatile to avoid injury and administer the strength and also speed essential to operation up and also down the court. The an excellent news is that the appropriate techniques are basic to learn and execute.

The crucial point come remember is that quads and hamstrings space sets of muscles, not individual muscles. Consequently, one move or collection of moves does no stretch the whole group. It takes three different sets that stretches for each muscle group. If you just do one of them, i m sorry is what most civilization do, you have a 66% opportunity of occurs a hamstring or quad pull.

Getting you yourself in shape prior to the season is imperative. A vital ingredient because that being in ideal condition is stretching your various sets of foot muscles: calves, quads, and hamstrings. The much better shape you are in, come game time, the much better able you will certainly be to run and also get in appropriate position to make the appropriate calls, and the much less your opportunity of injury.

Try to acquire in the habit the performing the proper stretch methods for all your significant leg muscles: calves, quads, and also hamstrings. Protect your legs so you have the right to run and remain injury free.

Proper “Wall extending Exercises”

1. For complete benefit, carry out these exercises with her shoes off.

2. Location your feet the length of one of your feet away from the wall surface (or door jam).

3. Suggest both toe in, towards each other.

4. Lug your pelvis into the wall surface (or door jam).

5. Store your knee locked.

6. You should keep her heels ~ above the ground.

7. Host the stretch for 15 seconds, climate relax because that 5 to 10 seconds. This have to be repeated 10 times. Holding the stretch because that much much longer than 15 seconds supplies no extr benefit, and may in reality hurt you. Ideally, these exercises must be done at the very least once a day, and try and do more than one set on the day of a game, if possible.

8. If her calf muscle hurt when doing this stretch, climate you should relocate in closer to the wall (or door jam) in one-inch increments.

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If you carry out not feeling a stretch on the calf muscle or after you have performed the practice consistently and feel much less of a stretch, then you have the right to move ago to among your feet away, in one-inch increments.