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Best Hamstring Exercises

by MAKAI

In our opinion, the best hamstring exercise's included but are not limited to the Romanian deadlift, the hamstring curl, the glute-ham raise and the single leg deadlift. 

The Hamstrings play a vital role in various movements such as walking, running, and jumping. Strengthening your hamstrings not only enhances athletic performance but also helps prevent injuries and improves overall lower body strength. In this article, we'll explore some of the best hamstring exercises to incorporate into your workout routine for optimal strength and functionality.

1. Romanian Deadlift (RDL)

The Romanian Deadlift is a compound exercise that targets the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. To perform RDLs, stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a barbell or dumbbells in front of your thighs. Keeping your back straight and core engaged, hinge at your hips and lower the weight towards the ground while maintaining a slight bend in your knees. Lower the weight until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings, then return to the starting position by squeezing your glutes and driving your hips forward.

2. Hamstring Curl (Machine or Stability Ball)

Hamstring curls can be performed using a dedicated machine at the gym or a stability ball at home. To do hamstring curls on a machine, adjust the settings to fit your height and select an appropriate weight. Position yourself face down on the machine with your ankles secured under the pad and your legs straight. Curl your heels towards your glutes, contracting your hamstrings, then slowly lower them back to the starting position.

For hamstring curls on a stability ball, lie on your back with your feet resting on the ball and your arms by your sides. Lift your hips off the ground to create a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. From this position, bend your knees and roll the ball towards your glutes, then extend your legs back out to the starting position.

3. Single-Leg Deadlift

The single-leg deadlift is a unilateral exercise that targets each hamstring individually, helping to address any muscle imbalances. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell or kettlebell in one hand. Shift your weight onto one leg while keeping a slight bend in your knee. Hinge at your hips and lower the weight towards the ground while lifting your non-weight-bearing leg behind you for balance. Keep your back straight and core engaged throughout the movement, then return to the starting position by squeezing your glutes and driving your hips forward.

4. Glute-Ham Raise

The glute-ham raise is an advanced bodyweight exercise that primarily targets the hamstrings and glutes. Start by kneeling on a padded surface with your feet secured under a sturdy object or partner. Lower your torso towards the ground while keeping your back straight, then use your hamstrings to push yourself back up to the starting position. Focus on controlling the movement and squeezing your hamstrings at the top of the exercise.

Incorporating these hamstring exercises into your workout routine can help improve strength, stability, and overall lower body function. Remember to start with lighter weights and gradually increase the resistance as you become more comfortable with each exercise. Additionally, always prioritize proper form and technique to maximize results and minimize the risk of injury. With consistency and dedication, you'll be well on your way to building stronger, more resilient hamstrings.

Check out our collection of activewear leggings and shorts to make all that hamstring work look great!

 

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