Thigh Pain in field goal kicker


Q: I am a field goal kicker and am having a problem with my right thigh, which is my kicking leg. I can take as many practice kicks as I would like without my leg hurting, but as soon as I take a real kick and come in contact with the ball, I get a very strong pain in my right quad. I've had many pulled muscles before and this one just doesn't feel like it is pulled. Also after the pain starts to seize, my leg begins to become tingly, then a little numb. Is it just a pulled muscle or what? All help will be appreciated greatly.


A:    There is something called “Overuse Syndrome”, this may affect any part of the body that is over stressed with movements or activities in a repetitive way, the repetition is part of the definition of overuse injury. The concept is that overuse injury is associated with repeated challenge without sufficient recovery time, while practicing any sport or activity in which you exceed the guidelines and your own limits or capacities. I think this is your case. A muscle sprain involves the tearing or stretching of the ligaments beyond their normal capacity. Most likely you may be experiencing a muscle strain which is associated with the tearing or excessive stretching of the muscle involved, in your case the Quadriceps. The  healing timeframe is different from person to person and also depends on the severity of the initial injury. The conservative treatment consists of: initially, protection, rest, ice, compression, and elevation (known as the PRICE formula), these can help the affected muscle and also maintain the strained muscle in a stretched position. Heat can be applied when the swelling has lessened, anti-inflammatory drugs (i.e.: “Aleve”), rest the strained muscle and avoid the activities that caused the strain and other activities that are painful. It is advisable to follow a Physical Therapy program for 4-6 weeks and practice at home the stretching exercises above all. Please try to avoid overuse and  do an appropriate warming-up and stretching before practicing significant physical activity.

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