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Hamstring Muscle Strain Injury

What Is a Hamstring Muscle Strain Injury?

Your hamstring muscles run down the back of your thigh from your sits bone to below the knee. A strained or pulled hamstring muscle is a common injury, particularly among athletes. Injury can occur to any of the three muscles in the hamstring, which include the:

  • Semitendinosus

  • Semimembranosus

  • Biceps femoris 

To reduce your risk of hamstring injuries:

  • Warm up before physical activity or sports.

  • Stretch quadriceps (the muscles in front of your thigh) and hamstring muscles.

  • Strength gluteus muscles to help support and work together with hamstring muscles.


Symptoms of a hamstring injury vary depending on the severity. Mild hamstring injuries may be uncomfortable but loosen up with stretching and warm-up. Moderate to severe hamstring injuries may have symptoms, such as:

  • Sudden pain during exercise

  • A popping or snapping feeling

  • Pain in the back of the thigh or lower buttock

  • Bruising

  • Tenderness

  • Limping

Treatment Options

Most of the time, hamstring injuries improve on their own with rest. If you have a sore or tender hamstring, rest from aggravating activities, icing the area and gentle stretching may alleviate your symptoms.

Over-the-counter anti-inflammatories can also help reduce swelling and improve pain.

If your hamstring injury results in bruising, significant limping or numbness/tingling down the leg or persists for several days or weeks and continues to interfere with daily activities, schedule an appointment with an orthopedic or sports medicine provider. A specialist will complete an evaluation to understand the cause and extent of your injury and will work to understand your goals for treatment.

Ready for an Appointment?

If you're experiencing signs or symptoms of hamstring muscle strain injury, schedule an appointment or call 800-TEMPLE-MED (800-836-7536) today.

Learn more about our doctors and care team who diagnose and treat hamstring muscle strain injury.