Sports Medicine
A Crucial Period
Good Pain, Bad Pain
On Your Knees
Secondary Injuries
Imaging Technology
What's Sciatica?
The Female Athlete
Putting Your Feet First
Itis Schmitis
Too Much, Too Soon
Under the Influence
What's Goin' On?
Think Inches, Not Pounds
Preventing Vaginitis
That Painful Pull
Athlete's Heart
Exercise & Arthritis
Chilled to the Bone
Measuring Body Fat
Exercise and Your Breasts
Choosing a Sports Doctor
Lean on Me (Shoulder)
Exercise & Anemia
Exercise Abuse
Pelvis Sighting
Hand Aid
It's All in the Wrist
Back in Action
Altitude Adjustment
Tennis Elbow, Anyone?
Exercising in the Heat
Agony of the Feet
Restless Legs
Night Time Cramps
Birth Control Concerns
No Periods, No Babies?
Post Partum Prescription
Weight Loss Mystery
Undesirable Cooldown
To Brew Or Not To Brew
Fitness After Baby
Biking and Back Pain
Swimmer's Shoulder
A Hidden Athlete
Avoiding Osteoporosis
Drug Testing
Maximum Heart Rate
Headway Against Headaches
Torn Rotator Cuff
Fat Figures
Bloody Urine
Sag Story
Lackluster Leg
Bothersome Bulge
Gaining in Years
Taking It On the Shin
Aching Ankles
Hoop Help
Tender Toes
Meals For Muscle
Growing Pains
Hot Tips
High Altitude PMS
Personal Bests
Air Pollution
Ankle Blues
Heartbreak Heel
Yeast Relief

That Painful Pull


Although your body starts to heal almost immediately, the process can easily be disrupted by impact, muscular contraction or weight bearing. Protect the area well at least until the healing process is secure.

If the injury is severe, use crutches or a splint to relieve the strain and protect your muscle from additional damage.

After 72 Hours

Maintain support and protection with the Ace bandage. Continue to apply ice for 15 minutes at a time three or four times a day. After three days, you can begin alternating ice with heat treatments.

The injury will heal with scar tissue, which is not as flexible as muscle and doesn't perform as well. Scar tissue in the middle of the muscle may predispose you to reinjury and potentially leave the muscle weaker than it was before the injury.

A previously injured muscle is more likely to tear again, particularly if it was not fully rehabilitated. Physical therapy is very important to help you strengthen a damaged muscle. Special machines can measure the progress of your muscular strength, so you can know when it is safe to return to activity. A monitored program also can help you return to full strength so that reinjury will be less likely to occur.

Be especially careful during the rehab period to get your muscular strength, flexibility, and biomechanics back in balance. During this time you may be more likely to suffer a secondary injury, hurting yourself in another area.

Good luck!

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About the authors: Carol L. Otis, M.D., is Chief Medical Advisor to the Sanex WTA and UCLA student health physician. Roger Goldingay is a former professional soccer player. They are married and the co-authors of The Athletic Woman's Survival Guide.

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Table of Contents

Foreword: Billie Jean King

Comments by Barb Harris
Editor in Chief,
Shape Magazine

General Health
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The information in this web site is for educational purposes only and is not providing medical or professional advice. It should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. If you have or suspect you might have any health problems, you should consult a physician.

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