A muscle strain or ‘pulled’ muscle happens when you tear some of the hundreds of thousands of muscle fibres that make up a muscle. If you’ve only torn a few then you might not feel much pain and perhaps just a bit of localised stiffness. If you do some serious damage then you might notice a gap or indent in the muscle, bruising around or below the pain site, and have trouble using that muscle. A grade 3 muscle strain is when you tear the muscle completely and is sometimes called a rupture.
Treating mild muscle strains;
Follow RICE (Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate) to reduce the swelling and pain.
Do not apply heat to the injured area for at least the first 48 hours, and do not get any massage to the area during this time.
For serious strains seek medical advice as soon as possible.