T Nation

Subtle Upper Hamstring Pain


i have had this for a few months. i think what caused it was sled dragging with long walking strides to get my hamstrings more. it hurts a little, not very much, in my right hamstring, just under the glute. but i can squat and it wont hurt at all even though that area does alot of the work. what hurts it are movements replicating the walking sled drag, a mostly straight leg pulling against resistanace. although eventualy i had to stop any sled dragging because it caused a little pain. also if i drive for an hour or more i get an annoying pain. i stopped all leg exercises for ten days so far. i tried foam rolling and not foam rolling.
i am curious what is wrong, it must be a soft tissue injury, i thought that would have healed by now.


This can be the consequence of insufficient glute activity. The glutes and hamstrings have similar jobs, but when the glutes aren't up to par the hamstrings have to work overtime to compensate.

Get those glutes working properly! Single leg glute bridges, pull throughs, basically every leg exercise you do you should put a big emphasis on finishing the movement with your ass.

As far as sitting down, it may be weird, but a ring or donut pillow so the tender spot doesn't touch a chair can help alleviate the pain helping the inflammation to subside.

Hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions.


I have had this in both hamstrings. It is an inflammed upper hamstring tendon and not the hamstring muscle fibres. Avoid all "stretchy" exercise like stiff leg deadlifts and hyperextensions, they seemed to really aggrivate mine, and also avoid hamstring stretches. The area can still do work but just not in a stretched position, thats why squats should be OK.

You are on the right track with the foam rolling, however I found that a foam roller was not hard enough to give me a deep massage. I used a shot putt and would roll around on it. If you do not have a shot then use a hard PVC pipe. You must massage the whole hamstring to lower the tonus of the muscle and thus reduce the pull on the tendon, you also need to massage you piriformis thoroughly. Doing this got rid of mine in a few weeks