Using hamstring exercises to strengthen your hamstring muscles and increase strength
It’s so important to train the big ones. What I mean by this is that your hamstrings are pretty important muscles for the majority of athletic movements. Every time you find your knees bent, your hamstrings are being affected to some degree.
And if you have a weakness here, then it’s especially important to take note.
Upper body fatigue is also important here – the more strain you put on weaker muscles, the more energy is required to support them, thus taking away power from other parts of your body.
So, from a leg curl machine to body weight hamstring strengthening exercises, what should you be doing to add more kick to your routine?
You could be doing some of these –
- Sumo squat
- Kettlebell swing
- Single leg deadlift
- Basic bridge
- Single leg bridge
- Lying leg curl
- Leg press on the ball
- Reverse plank
These are all brilliant exercises to help with the hamstrings and other areas of your body. A lot of leg exercises become compound exercises, so you can employ these to also improve different muscle groups.
The Sumo Squat
Let’s take a look at the first as an example.
This one is working your adductor muscles (inner thighs) and hamstrings. You can do this with just body weight or weights too.
First, you’ll need the right starting position – stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart. Your hips should be outwardly rotated.
Put your arms out in front of you at shoulder height, or place your hands on your shoulders if you’re using some sort of dumbell or free weight.
Begin to lower into the squat position with your feet still firmly planted, feet, hip-width apart. And lastly? As verywell puts it, ”Pause at the bottom, exhale and press back into a standing position. Keep weight evenly distributed in heel and midfoot.”
Whether you want to work your left leg or right leg, work on hip extension for hip flexors, or comfort levels with your legs extended, working on these exercises will help your hamstrings and more.
Some of the best hamstring exercises are actually the simple ones, so take a look at that list again and work through them, you’ll be stunned at how easy it is. If you have a hamstring injury, then, of course, these should be done sensitively.
I read the words biceps femoris, what does that mean?
It’s a muscle located in the posterior portion of the thigh.
Good terms to know when it comes to strengthening hamstrings:
- one leg at a time
- leg straight
- leg bent
- torso forward
- hips forward