4 Workouts to Better Your Hamstrings

by Michael Brown on October 25, 2019

hamstring workout

Hamstrings are a group of muscles (the semitendinosus, the semimembranosus and the biceps femoris muscles) on the posterior upper leg. They cross the knee and hip joints and are involved in flexing the knee and extending the hip. The hamstrings are involved daily activities such as running, walking and jumping and yet many people have tight or weak hamstring muscles due to inactivity and sedentary lifestyles. Incorporating a hamstring workout into a fitness routine can help maintain strength and prevent injury.

Why Are Hamstrings Important?

When strong, hamstrings provide stability, agility, strength and power. Hamstrings need to be strong and flexible to protect against injury and promote optimal fitness - if the muscle fibers can easily lengthen and contract, they are less likely to tear.

Can You Strengthen Your Hamstrings?

Yes! Hamstrings can be strengthened by a variety of exercises that can be done by anyone. Contrary to popular belief, strong hamstrings will not increase bulk or make a person appear bigger.

Here are 4 Awesome Exercises for an Effective Hamstring Workout

1. Romanian Deadlift

man about to lift barbell

Image source: Pexels

  • Hold a bar or dumbbells at hips with a pronated grip. Shoulders should be back and knees slightly bent.
  • Lower the bar by pushing the hips back while keep knees slightly bent. Keep the bar close to the body as you lower it. Keep the head looking forward, and shoulders back. Continue lowering until the maximum range of hamstring flexibility has been reached, which is typically just below the knee.
  • Return to the starting position by driving the hips forward to stand up tall.

2. Good Mornings

person holding one edge of the barbell

Image source: Pexels

  • With a barbell or pole resting across both shoulders, plant both feet on the floor hip-width apart. Draw shoulder blades down and back.
  • Bend knees slightly and set this as a fixed angle. Without changing the angle in the knees, hinge forward from the hips. Tension should be felt in the hamstrings.
  • Push through the heels and use the glutes and hamstrings to extend the hips to starting position

3. Glute Bridges

person doing a glute bridge workout

Image source: Youtube.com

  • Lie face up on the floor, with knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Keep arms alongside the body with palms facing down.
  • Lift hips off the ground until knees, hips and shoulders form a straight line. Squeeze the glutes keep abs engaged.
  • Hold the bridged position for several seconds before easing back down.

4. Swiss Ball Leg Curl

man doing a swiss ball leg curl workout

Image source: Youtube.com

  • Lie flat on the ground with feet elevated on a ball. Arms should rest comfortably alongside the body on the floor.
  • Using glutes and hamstrings, gently raise hips off the floor. Resting on the upper back, form a straight line from head to toe.
  • Keep feet together and hips elevated, bend the knees and bring the feet in towards the glutes. The ball should roll in towards the body.
  • Extend the knees to return to the starting position, ensuring hips remain elevated. The ball should roll away from you.

Conclusion

Strong and flexible hamstrings are vital to preventing injuries and improving performance. Hamstring workouts are easy to incorporate into fitness routines and can be done at the gym, at home or on the road.

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