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What Are the Benefits of a Hamstring Workout?

Hamstring stretches can help increase muscle flexibility.
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  • Written By: Alex Paul
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 11 October 2014
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The hamstrings are a large muscle group located in the back of the thigh. All three hamstring muscles are used in many everyday activities, such as running, biking and walking, as they help to control flexion of the knee. The benefits of a hamstring workout include building muscle to increase power and strength, to help reduce the chances of injury and to increase muscle definition and tone. A hamstring workout should usually focus on flexibility as well as strength, however, as the thigh muscles are often tight in athletes.

One of the main benefits of a hamstring workout is building strength to reduced the chance of injury. Athletes often fear hamstring injuries more than many other types due to the intense pain and long recovery time. Although a hamstring workout can’t prevent injuries from occurring completely, it can certainly help reduce the chances. Hamstring flexibility is often poor in such athletes as runners, which is why regular stretching — often at least once a day for thirty seconds — is important.

Stronger hamstring muscles can also help an athlete compete more effectively. The hamstrings are involved in many competitive sports activities, so working on increasing the strength of the muscles may help the athlete increase speed and improve stamina. Gaining a competitive advantage is important for any sport, and a regular hamstring workout is one way to achieve this.

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A hamstring workout is also useful for aesthetic reasons. Although this is often a consideration for women rather than men, working on the hamstring muscles can lead to toned muscles that look slim and attractive. The hamstrings are one of the largest muscle groups in the body, and hence are important if a person wants to have attractive legs.

There are three hamstring muscles that work together in order to provide knee flexion and stability. These muscles are the biceps femoris, semitendinosus and semimembranosus. There are a number of exercises that can be used to increase hamstring strength, but one of the most popular is the hamstring curl. To perform this exercise the athlete starts on his or her back with feet on an exercise ball and hips elevated. Keeping the hips up, the knees are flexed to bring the ball toward the person and then back again.

To perform a hamstring stretch, the athlete should lay on his or her back with a towel or exercise band wrapped around the heel of one foot. Slowly, the leg should be raised upward until a stretch is felt. This position should be held for at least 30 seconds and should not be painful.

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Spotiche5
Post 2

@rundocuri- Walking in a pattern that consists of wide strides also help to loosen up the hamstring muscles. You can do this by starting out at a slow pace then increasing your strides. If you have an area to walk that has hills, walking up them will also provide a great workout for your hamstrings.

Once you start flexing your hamstring muscles with walking exercises, you will be ready to begin an exercise regimen that includes weight training. This type of program will go a step further to not only keep your hamstrings flexible, but to also create muscle strength and definition.

Rundocuri
Post 1

I have issues with hip and lower back pain, and have found that hamstring exercises are also good for helping to ease these issues. Gaining strength in hamstring muscles seems to also help support hip and back muscles.

A simple way to start exercising your hamstrings is to do several repetitions of side lunges. These movements will help to stretch and loosen up your hamstrings so you can move on to more strenuous exercises that include weights and running.

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