In article <[email protected]
>, [email protected]
> Mike Elliott <[email protected]
> wrote in message
> news:<[email protected]
> > Are cycling/exercise medical questions .tech or .misc? I hope so!
> > I've been diagnosed with hamstring tendonitis. After a longish ride the tendons on the lateral
> > backside of my left knee get really painful. Ouch, ouch, ouch! What treatments are there that
> > can reduce the irritation? Pre, during and post-ride? I can't take aspirin or other NSAIDs due
> > to gastric ulcers that nearly felled me a couple years ago. If you've found something that works
> > for you, I'd like to hear of it!
> Tendonitis is a treatable affliction. It is usually caused by overuse or over extension.
> First of all be certain that your seating position isn't too high. This sounds like your
> problem to me but maybe not. I suspect that you were a runner or jogger at one time and didn't
> stretch much.
> Now that you have this tendonitis it isn't easy to get rid of. Hamstring tendons are often injured
> from stretching exercises. You have to be exceptionally careful not to stretch when cold. What is
> diagnosed as tendonitis could be torn ligaments or tendons strained from stretching.
> Unfortunately, hamstrings are very slow healing and require a lot of patience. You must exercise
> but not to the extent that you are getting hamstring pain. After warmups - say riding your bike
> for 20 minutes at a moderate pace - you can slowly and carefully stretch your hamstrings with the
> normal hamstring stretchs shown in the exercise books. Again you must be careful and if you are
> stretching so much that you can feel the tendons pulling you are stretching too far. A normal
> stretch is just returning the tendons to their NORMAL length. Don't mistake it for actually
> stretching the tendon beyond it's natural length at the time. After your ride again do the
> It is sometimes good to ice the area of pain for 20 or more minutes after your exercise and
> stretching. Some people recommend an anti-inflammatory such as aspirin or ibuprofin but in some
> people these cause stomach problems and aren't really necessary.
> Over time you'll be able to get your tendons out to normal lengths but impatience can undo all of
> your previous work. I would expect this problem to take three to four months to put behind you so
> be sure to take your time.
> A word of warning. You might be one of the individuals that has naturally short hamstrings and if
> that is the case you should consult a good sports doctor or physiotheropist who is experienced
> with cyclists and fitting a cyclist to a bike.
Thanks, Tom. Excellent information and suggestions.
My hamstrings are pretty loose -- I can just about put the palms of my hands flat on the ground when
doing a touch-your-toes while standing without warming up.
I raised my seat six months ago by about a centimeter because my patellar tendons were complaining
loudly after long climbs. This took care of that special interest group. I think the hamstring
tendonitis due to a messed up knee.
The tendonitis is isolated to my left knee, which is metal under the skin, and has a lot of
scarring. When viewed via an x-ray, the bone bits are quite misshapen, with lots o' lumpy parts.
I have only -- ever -- experienced this tenderness recently, like the past 30 days, and this after
ramping up slowly to riding longer distances (for me, that would be 40 miles or so in San Diego's
hilly North County, longer on flats if you can find any).
I suspect that the hamstring tendons on that side are just, well, being rubbed the wrong way. My
orthopaedic surgeon, whom I saw yesterday, expressed great satisfaction about how the knee is
holding up. But w/r/t tendonitis, he said he can't do anything for me and opined that this was my
body's way of telling me to cut it out. As in, give up cycling. He's mad, obviously. I just need to
learn how to take care of the tendons on that side.