Bodyweight exercises for hamstrings are one of the important exercises for an athlete who relies on his legs, such as a runner or a soccer player. Some of them often experience tense or pulled leg muscles in the hamstrings. This is because the muscle strength of the quadriceps is stronger than the hamstrings when the legs move. But does this only happen to a professional athlete? Not really, even ordinary people like you can experience the same condition.
When you think about hamstrings, they are very important when you bend, straighten your legs, useful for preventing back and knee pain. So when your hamstrings are weak and tight, it can cause lower back pain because they are unable to support your pelvis and lower back. That means simple activities such as climbing stairs may be difficult for you. Also, it creates the risk of injury when you do exercises that involve bending the knee and leg extension.
Beginner’s Bodyweight Exercises for Hamstrings.
So to avoid those bad things, doing strength training for hamstrings is the best option. This exercise will increase hamstring flexibility and challenge your stability while building strength.
1. Natural Leg Curls.
This exercise requires little equipment or a friend’s help. Leg curls or Nordic hamstrings are strength exercises that burn your hamstrings and glutes using your bodyweight when you don’t have access to a leg curl machine. You can use a stool, a table leg at home, or a little help from your partner. This is a solid step you have to do.
How to: Kneel on soft pads with your ankles held by a partner or a sturdy object. Then lean forward using your knees to stretch your hamstrings. Do it slowly and in control. Lower your body as low as possible to the floor without the help of your hands. If your legs are unable to support your weight, place your hands in front of you on the floor. Next, return to the starting position by pushing yourself up.
Beginners usually don’t have enough strength to lower their body as low as possible to the floor. So start with a few reps at the beginning, using the help of your hands before completely releasing them and doing a larger range of motion when you are comfortable. Also, don’t use your hips when lowering your body as that doesn’t strengthen your hamstrings.
2. Inchworms Exercises.
Want to train multiple muscle groups in one workout? Inchworms are the best. This is a great way to stretch your hamstrings while working your core and upper body like your shoulders and arms. Your hamstrings will work when you bend over like a plank and when you return to standing. Your core and upper body will be involved while supporting your weight in the plank position.
How to: Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Inhale and begin swinging from your hips and reaching the floor with your hands in front of you. Let your back and knees bend slightly, to allow your hands to reach the floor. This will provide a good stretch of the hamstrings, calves, and glutes as your hips begin to lift.
Then move your hands forward as far as you can while exhaling. Pause for a few seconds in the extended plank position. Then bring your hands back and stop in front of your toes. In this position, straighten your legs to do the hamstring stretch. This is one repetition, continue the exercise with the repetitions according to your ability.
3. Bodyweight Good Morning Exercises.
This is a great exercise for beginners to work out the hamstrings in an easy way. Although it looks like it only works on the lower back, it actually engages your hamstrings, glutes, and core as well.
How to: Stand with your feet hip-width apart with your fingertips behind your head. Make sure your back is straight with a strong core. Then push your hips back while lowering your torso until it is parallel to the floor. Pause for one second before returning to the starting position.
The bodyweight version is the most basic of this group of workouts. Before you move forward using weights such as dumbbells, barbells, or resistance bands, master the movement patterns, and perfect your form. Also, lower your body as far as you can in the perfect form if you don’t have the mobility and strength of your hips.
4. Hamstring Walkout.
By relying on your heels for walking, this exercise will involve different muscles throughout the back including your thighs. To keep your hips lifted during the exercise, focus on squeezing your glute
How to: Lie on your back with knees bent and heels on the floor. Then tighten your core and push your hips into the glute bridge for the starting position. Using your heels, take alternating short steps forward. Stop before you lose your knee bend. Next, slowly step back to the starting position using your heels.
5. Crab Walk Exericses.
This is a total-body movement involving your hamstrings, quads, butts, shoulders, core, arms, and lower back. If you want to increase your mobility while burning calories, consider a crab walk for overall fitness.
How to: Sit on the floor and then bend your knees with your feet hip-width apart. Place your palms on the floor behind your waist with your fingers facing forward. Lift your hips using your glutes and core to create a tabletop position. Then take a few steps with your left foot and right hand followed by the opposite leg and hand. Reverse the movement to the beginning and continue for the recommended repetitions.
The hamstrings are three large muscles that connect muscles and bones. They are located on the back of your thigh, extending from the hip to the bottom of your knee. So you can imagine if this part is weak, it will change your life. Weak hamstrings are generally caused by a lack of movement or sitting too long. It can also cause lower back pain as the hip flexors, quadriceps, and lower back muscles become very tight.
The hamstrings are less used when you are standing or walking, but they are very active when you bend your knees, jump, or run. So if you want to be more agile, run faster, jump higher, and improve your posture, having strong hamstrings is a must.
Besides, having strong thighs also protects you from the risk of muscle tension and tearing. Therefore, most strength training today includes a lot of hamstring work like this one. For beginners, these bodyweight exercises are the best for working the hamstrings before moving on to the next stage.