Muscle strains are identified as a pulled muscle and can occur when a muscle is torn or overstretched. Strains typically happen as a result of overuse, fatigue, or improper use of the muscle. While strains can happen in any part of the body, they are most commonly found in the legs, shoulders, neck, and lower back. Often, strains cause movement limitations and pain.

Types of Muscle Strains

Symptoms of Mild Strain

  • Minimal pain
  • Minor swelling
  • No loss of function
  • Able to bear weight

Symptoms of Moderate Strain

  • Moderate pain
  • Moderate swelling
  • Some loss of function
  • Difficult to bear weight
  • Mild to moderate bruising

Severe Symptoms

  • Severe pain
  • Minor to severe swelling
  • Loss of function
  • Unable to bear weight
  • Mild to severe bruising

Causes of Muscle Strains

Muscle strains can occur due to overuse, fatigue, or improper muscle use. Typically they can be due to:

  • Poor conditioning
  • Poor flexibility
  • Not properly warming up
  • Fatigue
  • Overexertion
  • Repetitive movement
  • Exercising in cold weather
  • Holding a muscle in an awkward position
  • Poor posture

Treatment for Muscle Strains

Most muscle strains can easily be treated at home with rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, may help with pain and swelling. After a few days of rest, heat pads and light stretching will aid in healing.

Contact Us

For more information on the Rockets Sports Medicine Institute orthopedic doctors or surgeons, treatment for injuries, scheduling Human Performance services, or getting more information about physical therapy, please fill out the form below or call us at (713) 222-2273


Thank you for contacting the Memorial Hermann | Rockets Sports Medicine Institute. We have received your inquiry, and a team member will contact you soon.

If you need more immediate assistance, please call us at (713) 222-2273.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.