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PainPod Applications for Hamstrings and Upper Back Function

by PainPod Australia

Since the beginning of my career in sport performance and based on experience working with high level athletes, I have found hamstrings/gluteus medius and neck/upper back to be the areas most likely affected by neuromuscular dysfunctions due to the lack of proper function and activation.

Hamstrings and gluteus medius muscles are fundamental in sports performance, especially in high speed running-based activities, because of their ability to provide high levels of force/power output as well as synchronization and stabilization for the hip joint.   

Hamstrings is the name of a group of three muscles (Semimembranosus, Semitendinosus and Biceps Femoris) which mainly work eccentrically at high contraction speed in the terminal part of the swing phase during running/sprinting: the eccentric strength as well as tissue architecture and timing of activation and synchronization of these three muscles is essential for performance output and injury prevention.

The gluteus medius muscle acts as a fundamental hip joint stabiliser: it works dynamically as a hip abductor as well as external/internal rotator (due to activity of the anterior and posterior fibers) and isometrically as a powerful hip stabilizer during the stance phase and weight bearing phase of running.      

The neck and the upper back are the most dysfunctional areas in athletes as psychophysiological stress as well as bad posture and muscle imbalances can create inhibition of proper function and lack of activation: in my experience the dysfunctions appear mainly in lower trapezius and serratus anterior, affecting the ability of the scapula to dynamically stabilise the shoulder and maintain proper scapulothoracic rhythm movement.

BASIC PAINPOD PROTOCOLS TO IMPROVE PROPRIOCEPTION AND KINESTHETIC AWARENESS FOR HAMSTRING/GLUTEUS AND UPPER BACK


HAMSTRINGS/GLUTEUS MEDIUS PROTOCOL

PainPod Mode: 11

STEP 1

Pad placement (#1): A channel (left hamstring), B channel (right hamstring)

Intensity: up to 10-12 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (20” stimulation + romanian deadlift) x 3

Execution: start bodyweight and progressing to light barbell loading, eccentric phase to be made slowly in a controlled fashion. Focus on feeling hamstring lengthening.

STEP 2

Pad placement (#1): A channel (left hamstring), B channel (right hamstring)

Intensity: up to 10-12 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (30” stimulation + single leg romanian deadlift) x 3

Execution: start bodyweight and progressing to light barbell loading, eccentric phase to be made slowly in a controlled fashion. Focus on feeling hamstring lengthening.

STEP 3

Pad placement (#2): A channel (left gluteus medius + maximus, large pad parallel to the fibers), B channel (right gluteus medius + maximus, large pad parallel to the muscle fibers)

Intensity: up to 10-12 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (20”-30” stimulation + one leg side bridge) x 3

Execution: slowly in a controlled fashion. Focus on feeling glutes contraction during abduction of the hip.


NECK + UPPER BACK PROTOCOL

PainPod Mode: 8

STEP 1

Pad placement (#3): A channel (left lower trapezius), B channel (right lower trapezius)

Intensity: up to 10 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (20” stimulation + scapular wall slide) x 3

STEP 2

Pad placement(#3): A channel (right lower trapezius), B channel (left lower trapezius)

Intensity: up to 10 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (30” stimulation + prone Y) x 3

STEP 3

Pad placement (#4): A channel (left serratus anterior), B channel (right serratus anterior)

Intensity: up to 10 (as tolerated)

Exercise: (30” stimulation + scapular push up) x 3

Article by

Antonio Robustelli

PainPod BioTechnology advisory board - Head of Sports & Technical Science. International Sports Performance consultant

Home Nation: Italy / Sport: Multiple / Date Joined: 2017

Antonio is a widely sought after International Sports Performance Consultant & Applied Sports Technologist. He works around the world with Olympic athletes and professional sports teams in Europe, Asia and the USA. He is a prominent speaker and contributor to international sports magazines including Athletics Weekly.

His area of expertise includes injury prevention, sports technology, strength training programming, speed development and recovery monitoring. He works with advanced technologies in the field of performance monitoring, injury prevention and improved performance that includes infrared thermography, foot pressure mapping, myotonometry and tensiomyography

A regular speaker and lecturer at International Sports Science conferences, he is currently writing ‘Sports Biometry: application of technology for Sports Science’.