Posted on March 07, 2018 by Jenny Cromack
Ieuan’s Hamstring Protection Workout!
I am currently treating several people with hamstring complaints and when observing their daily workout regimes I am noticing a common gap and deficiency in how they are loading these problematic hamstring muscles. So this week’s workout installment offers a workout that will help make those hamstrings bomb-proof and give you more time training and less time sat feeling sorry for yourself! If you suffer from hamstring injuries then try this hamstring workout.
When we consider making our muscles stronger we tend to focus on concentric, muscle-shortening, contractions. If we take a second to think about when hamstrings commonly get injured, it is usually in a decelerating movement (e.g., stopping or changing running direction or lowering during a deadlift). These concentric contractions we spend most of our gym days doing will not help us cope with these loads, so here is a quick hamstring-friendly blast that will provide the ammo they need to keep injury-free.
A: Toe Touch Dynamic Stretch 2 x 15
Like a deadlift movement fold at the hips and, allowing a natural bend in the knee, touch towards your toes until you feel a pull in the hamstrings. Do this movement slowly and under control with a brief pause at the stretch point. Repeat this for stated reps and sets.
B1: Single-Leg Opposite Toe Touches – 2 x 12 Each Leg
From standing fold at the hips and reach towards your fixed foot toe with the opposite hand. As you bend to touch the toe let the other leg swing back like a pendulum as you slowly control this movement.
B2: Lying Single Leg Straight Leg Raise – 2 x 12 Each Leg
C: Prone Banded Concentric-to-Eccentric Hamstring Curls 3 x 12
Lying face down place a light/moderate strength band around the lower leg/ankle area. Pull the heel towards your bum, keeping your pelvis in contact with the floor. Once you get as far as you can, slowly control the movement back to starting position over a period of 6-8 seconds.
D1: Barbell Romanian Deadlift 3 x 12
With these focus on the lowering of the bar over and again take a good 6-8 seconds to lower down the bar.
D2: Single Leg Glute Bridges 3 x 12 Each Leg
E1: Lateral Lunges 3 x 10 Each Leg
E2: Long Jump to Single-Leg Land 3 x 6 Each Leg
With this exercise you take off from both feet but land on one. The focus is to land as softly as possible so as you land the knee bends under control and the muscles act as a spring to absorb the landing. Once you have mastered a straight forward jump and land, try altering the angles of the jump to stabilise multidirectional forces.
This is only a suggested session and if you do have any injuries it is always wise to seek medical help and seek clear diagnoses before engaging in any exercise protocol. This session would also fall in as a part of a larger session that may also work on optimising mechanics and whole-body stability.
Good luck and enjoy!