Stretch Hamstrings Exercises | Loose Tight Hamstring and their Benefits

stretch hamstrings exercises
(Last Updated On: February 18, 2022)

This is an essential topic to be brought up by an Athletic, Body Builder during a workout session, or anyone with plans to strengthen their leg muscles of which exercises will stretch the hamstrings muscles.

The hamstring muscle plays important rules on the mobility of the body, which is responsible for bending the knee joint and extending the thighs in order to straighten them, which means that it controls the movements of the lower leg forward and backward, in addition to extending the hips to be straightened.

So you need to make sure this muscle is flexible and has enough strength to keep it functioning and away from any potential injury, which can enable this with hamstring stretches.

 

Hamstring Muscle Anatomy

The hamstrings are located in the upper back of your leg on the posterior of the thigh muscles between the hips down to the knees.

It contains a group of three major muscles segmented into the biceps femoris with short, long, semi-tendinous and semi-membranous heads and tendons that connect these muscles to the pelvic bones and knees.

Hamstring anatomy Muscles

 

What is the Cause of Hamstring Tightness?

Sports and athletics that involve excessive running or “stop-and-start movement” such as soccer and tennis, may cause hamstring strains and tightness. In addition to activities such as dancing or running.

In addition to the following reason:

Hereditary: In regards to historical family records, you can naturally be born with short and tight hamstrings when other people have naturally flexed muscles.

Flexibility and Mobility: Activity and schedule exercising will create loose muscles and, on the other hand, insufficient stretching will result in tight hamstrings.

Lower Back Issues: It can add more pressure to the nerve in the hips, which flows down into the legs and causes the muscles to tighten.

 

Benefits of Hamstring Stretches

The hamstrings responsible for the movements of the knee and hips include walking, running, bending the hips, and squatting.

Based on this importance, you need to keep your hamstrings flexible as much as possible. Here are the main benefits of a hamstring stretch:

1) Hamstring Stretches Preventing lower Back Pain

Narrowing and tightening of the hamstrings, which limits pelvic movements, which in turn increases pressure on the lower back and causes back pain.
Stretching and strengthening the hamstrings will prevent tightness and develop flexible muscles that provide additional support for the lower back and pelvis.

2) Stretching the Hamstrings Reduces Injury

Maintaining the loosen hamstrings, will reduce any chance of muscle strain or fiber tear during any excessive body activities, especially in sports such as playing soccer and running.

The usual treatment for such strain damage is by covering the stress area with ice along with appropriate pressure and certainly resting the muscles. But with the stretching and trained of the muscles will prevent such an injury.

3) Increase Flexibility

Stretching exercises will improve the range of motion during the movement of the muscles in the pelvic level and increase their flexibility.
These benefits will provide additional support for performing daily routine tasks, such as walking and climbing stairs.

4) Improve Posture Alignment

With tight hamstrings restricted, it will result swing the back posture by moving the pelvis forward and upper torso backward, often causing a strain in the middle back.

In addition it will flatten the natural curve of lumbar back, causing poor posture while standing and seated.

By stretching the hamstrings, you are keeping back spinal loose and improving the correct natural postural alignment curve.

Best Way to Stretch Hamstrings Exercises

How to stretch the hamstring muscles? The following useful exercises for the back legs that can be performed for flexibility, increase range of motion and warm up the hamstrings.

1) Simple Hamstring Stretch

Simple Hamstring Stretch

Let’s start with the simple stretches. If you have any type of lower back pain, you can proceed with extreme caution.

1. Sit on a soft mat with your legs straight in front of you.
2. Begin by extending both arms forward until they are close to your feet.

3. bending the waist as far as possible toward your legs and keeping the knees straight, then place your palms on the floor near your feet.
4. Pause in this position for 20 – 25 seconds.
5. Breath out and then return back to the starting position.
6. Repeat about 4 times.

When you begin to feel any pain, it is recommended that you stop this exercise.

 

2) Hurdler Hamstring Stretch

Hurdler Hamstring Stretch

The hurdler hamstring stretch is another useful simple exercise.

1. Sit on a mat with one leg straight in front of you.
2. Begin by bending the second leg at knee level and placing the bottom of the foot on the inner thigh of the first leg, close to your hip.
3. Then extend your arms forward toward your feet above the straight leg by bending the waist forward as far as possible, until your hand reach close to your feet.
4. Keep this position for 15 seconds.
5. Alternate between the legs and repeat the exercise.

 

3) Seated Hamstring Stretch

Seated Hamstring stretch

1. Sit on the floor by extending the right leg forward, keeping it slightly bent at the knee.
2. Set the left leg bent at knee with the foot facing inward.
3. Slowly bend torso forward at the waist, placing both hands on your shin (between your knees and feet) making sure to keep your back straight.
4. Stretch and keep this position for 15–20 seconds.
5. Switch between the legs and repeat for three times.

 

 

4) Standing Hamstring Stretch (Both legs at once)

Standing Hamstring Stretch - two legs

The upcoming stretch requires a little effort and focus with balancing the body, to stabilize during the exercise.

Because it is performed in a standing position with both legs stretched at the same time. So let’s get started:

1. Stand while crossing your right leg in front of your left.
2. While keeping the knees straight.
3. Carefully begin by bending your waist forward and lowering your head to the level of your right knee. While trying to put your palms on the floor as much as possible.
4. Keep this position for 20 – 25 seconds.
5. Switch between cross legs and repeat.

 

5) Standing Hamstring Stretch (One Leg each Time)

Standing Hamstring Stretch - One Leg

This is an easy and effective extension, you can take advantage of this by performing anywhere in your home or office. Let’s Begin:

1. Stand straight with one heel placed on a small box or similar height.
2. While maintain your knee straight.
3. Raise both arms high toward the ceiling.
4. Keep your back straighten.
5. Bend your torso forward about 30 degrees (slightly forward from your hips) making sure your arms and back are aligned in a straight line.
6. Start sending your torso forward, When you reach forward, you feel a stretch in the hamstring muscle.
7. Keep this position for 20 – 25 seconds.
8. Repeat 4 times.
9. Alternate between your legs and repeat the process.

 

6) Runner’s Hamstring and Calf Stretch

Runners Stretch - warm up

This stretch contains a common routine of flexibility for both the calf muscles and the hamstrings.

1. Stand straight in front of a wall and place both hands on the wall at shoulder height and shoulder width.
2. Begin by taking a step back with one leg, while continuing to push both hands into the wall.
3. Keep your back, knees straight and heels flat on the floor.
4. Maintain this position for 20 – 25 seconds.
5. Step forward and switch with the second leg.
6. Repeat 4 times on each leg.

 

Hamstring stretches for Runners

Many of the runners research fully agree that most professional runners understand the importance of maintaining flexible body muscles, especially the hamstrings and quads, since they provide the power velocity to finish the race in first position.

On the basis of the continuous schedule, the stretching retention will help to develop flexibility with loosening and prevent any possible injuries, in order to keep the muscles un-tight and working efficiently.

The above six stretches are very useful for any runner to develop a strong hamstrings, before they start their activity.

In short, the muscle stretches required for runners to focus on the following muscles:

(1) Hamstrings Muscles

(2) Quads Muscles

(3) Calves Muscles

 

Tips for Stretching Hamstring

  • Usually the best time to do hamstring stretches is before the exercising and preferably added after the exercising.

 

  • Before starting to exercise, people should warm up, as this will increase the heart rate and improve blood circulation, which will leads all the muscles are absorbed with the oxygen needed to improve exercise performance and avoid injuries.

 

  • Stretching after exercise greatly helps in relieving muscle tension. This can help the muscles recover quickly and reduce any pain after a routine exercise.

 

  • Hamstring stretches are beneficial for all people regardless of type of the workout they intend to practice, perform sports or normal routine life.
    Daily stretching will keep the muscles energized fully and loose.

 

Summary

Stretching overall has high benefits for general health, as it improves muscle flexibility and prevents any injury.

A hamstring stretch will help keep these muscles loose and flexible, while maintaining correct back posture, increasing flexibility and avoiding lower back pain or tension. In addition, it is preferred to strengthen and exercise the hamstring muscles.

Regular stretching with the right amount strengthening exercises for men or women helps prevent hamstring damage or muscle strain.

I hope you got the most out of this article, if you have any query, please send your comment below, I would love to help you.

 

One thought on “Stretch Hamstrings Exercises | Loose Tight Hamstring and their Benefits

  1. I loved what you shared especially about how to exercise the muscles that will improve posture and straighten hip flexor. I will combine it with what I am doing to improve my results.

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