Tyson Gillies sheds some light on his injury

We’ve read a few reports in the last few weeks indicating that Tyson Gillies was making some progress, but we never really heard what the problem was exactly, as he had gone to Nebraska this spring to see a specialist. Tonight on twitter, he gave an answer

my right hip and left groin weren’t firing properly and my left hammy took all the stress, and that’s why it didn’t heal

The hip bone connected to the……eh I forget how it goes. Anyway, its great to see the problem has been diagnosed and he’s on the road to recovery. This should relieve the stress and burden on his hamstring, which should hopefully allow him to tap back in to his plus plus speed. Just wanted to pass this on.

23 thoughts on “Tyson Gillies sheds some light on his injury

  1. Weren’t firing properly doesn’t explain much and it is unclear what he has done to address the issue. I guess that is the downside of a 140 character limit.

  2. That tells us what they now think the physical problem is, but how do you fix that ??

    1. The way things are going, when Romero returns, Herdon will be sent down and Stutes will stay.

  3. the way to correct a problem like that is to retrain the muscles. Our muscles are designed to work in a certain way, and after years and years of use, they gain a certain type of muscle memory. Any type of interference in the process can cause muscles to over or under compensate to correct the problem at hand. Im assuming that somewhere in the past (maybe even the original hammy injury) caused Tyson to compensate for that decificiency by using his other muscles in a different way in order to aleviate pain and restore physiologic function. This is of course a completely subconscious process and not something anyone can control. Think of it like someone who broke a leg or arm. In order to take stress off of that injury the muscles around it build themselves up and take the brunt of the work. So once that injury is healed, those other muscles are still stronger or acting differently than normal and can change the way that area works even with the injury healed. The way to correct a problem like this is to completely retrain the muscles to work in the physiologically correct way. This is done by what i assume is exactly what he has been doing, rehab. You need to build up the injured muscle and regain strength it needs to function normally, but you also need to break it down, to even the smallest movements, and correct the other muscles desire to overcompensate. As cliche as it sounds, you need to walk before you can run. In rehab he has to focus on each and every step he takes to make sure his hips stay parallel and even. Eventually, with extensive repetition his Hip will stay even, the muscles wont pull that hip up abnormally in a limp like fashion. Without that limping hip motion, his groin will recondition itself to pull the correct amount instead of the overcompensation it needed before. Its a long extensive process and not something he can correct overnight through sheer will of action.

    1. sorry if thats more than you guys wanted or needed. Im a 3rd year medical school student with a goal of getting into orthopedics and i tend to get carried away with it. I tried to explain it in standard english and clear enough that someone with out my boring textbooks could understand. Hope i helped.

      1. I really appreciated the detailed analysis. I also have a vested interest in learning more about it, because i had both hips replaced, 6 months apart in 2008, and still have not regained a normal gait, i suspect in part because i was compensating for the weakness and pain for so long before the surgeries. Would like to pick your brain some more, if you’d be willing.

      2. I appreciate it quite a bit. I had a somewhat similar issue about 4 months back with my right knee. Basically what it comes down to is certain muscles were stronger than others and my IT Band was being pulled and rubbing against bone. My kneecap was being pulled in the opposite direction, and all of this unevenness was causing a great deal of pain and inflammation. Basically what I did was stop my workout routine, strengthen all the muscles groups together equally, and then resume my running from there. It was a slow, but steady process, and now I can honestly say that my leg/knee has never felt better or been stronger. I know this isn’t the same injury Tyson has/had, but there is some assurance in knowing that it will simply take some time and patience on his part and he will eventually be 100%. Since recovering from this I am in better physical condition than I have been in my entire life, and I have not once had any recurrence of the injury. I hope nothing but the same for Tyson.

      3. Please post more often! I feel like we have so many amateur orthopedists on this site, and I’m glad to have an (aspiring) professional.

        1. Haha well thank you. I am an occasional poster but have been on the site since about the first month james started it. I read just about every comment thrown around because sports and especially minor league baseball really is a passion of mine. I just tend to be the type of person who doesnt get wrapped up in futile arguments. I’ll try to get more into the discussion, especially since my semester ended today and i have a bit more free time.

      4. Dude, you ouhhta check out my gait – two partial knee replacements two years ago, and while I’ve recovered completely (the fact that I’m very young for a knee replacement candidate and in very good health helps), my gait (and thus my back) has not recovered from the costant limping pre-surgery and lumbering around post-surgery.

        So I know totally where you are coming from regarding Gillies – nice post!

        – Jeff

    2. Thanks for explaining! My question is, about how long should the rehab take until he is back to normal? Months? Years? When would you expect to see him in a Reading Phillies game again? The good news is it sound like he can to full health with all his speed, right?

      1. Ken, thats a great question. And since im still in school and not out running a rehabilitation clinic where i see these issues and have treated them and gotten the experience, its tough for me to give a definitive answer. I think alot of it has to do with the degree to which the motions are changed and also to the length of time that the body has had to adjust to it. The longer that the dysfunction manifests, the more used to the condition the muscles become. Therefore its usually harder to recondition someone whos been at it 30 years as opposed to someone with an acute injury. It is why you hear doctors tell patients that as soon as they are healed, they need to start rehab and strengthen. Same applies to almost any bodily function. The same principle is being practiced every day in surgeries. Most patients want to do nothing but lay in bed and recover, but tests have shown that the quicker and more often patients get up and move around post surgery, the faster the healing process and the faster other bodily processes return to normal. In terms of the length of time it should take to retrain i would lean towards weeks to months instead of years. It all relies on the diligence of the patient. Someone who practices constantly is going to improve at a quicker rate than someone who does it occasionally. Its the same principle taught to young pitchers in the minors. The more often you practice and repeat your delivery. The more you focus on exact replication of it, the quicker your muscles begin to remember what that feels like and begin to be able to reproduce those results. I have thought for years that young pitchers should practice that more. Im not sure why coaches don’t have their kids out there on the mound every day repeating and repeating their deliveries. They don’t need to throw the ball, obviously that would take a toll on the arm, but other aspects of it that need practice can be easily trained into it.

      2. and to answer you’re other question that i seemed to have forgotten in my rambling. I don’t see any reason why Tyson wouldnt be able to gain his full speed back and return 100 percent healthy. Hamstring injuries can be tough sometimes due to the nature of the muscles and the tension and constant use of them. There does tend to be a high incidence of recurrance in sports because any muscle strain is essentially micro-tears in the muscle. The tissue doesnt automatically regenerate but often leaves small areas of scarring. So the next time you use that muscle it can feel like its tearing all over again when the scar tissue is stretched and pulled beyond its capacity and is torn. Eventually with most muscle, if the muscle is strengthened and worked out properly, the scar tissue will be replaced once again with muscle fiber. Its just a delicate process that takes patience and diligence. Most reinjuries occur because people feel great once its initially healed and jump right back into going full bore without strengthening the muscle around the area and giving the tissue time to return to normal through the slow process of reconditioning.

    1. haha thanks james, but the credit all goes to you. Without you’re constant work to give us this great website none of us would have a great place to go and muse on minor league baseball.

    1. Given that this was a thread about an oft-inured minor leaguer, and you are shedding insight on this injury, then hijack away, Wildcat!

      I seem to recall late 80s uber-prospect Ron Jones (what a hitter!) having a similar issue where he kept blowing out his knees because his quad muscles were too strong for the rest of his legs, and the unforgiving Vet turf tore him up.

      – Jef

  4. A great iteration on injuries known to occur in baseball. Why not go into orthopedics within sports? Teams could certainly consider those kind of great help for their athletes that they have so much money invested in. Sports medicine…?

    If you have a passion for the game AND orthopedics…a happy combination.

    Hope you’ll chip in when the inevitable Phils’ players have medical/muscle/ligaments/bone issues during the season.

    We all would–I bet–like to pick your brains…and learn a bit about your field of medicine AND about our players.


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