so today’s muscles of interest are the
hamstrings now the hamstrings are located and the back of our thighs and
these hamstrings are made up of three different muscles the semitendinosus the
semimembranosus and the biceps femoris these muscles work together to extend
the hip for example during the deadlift and also
to flex the knee for example during any leg curl exercise
it’s important that we do both variations to optimize hamstring
development with that being said the first exercise we’re going to look at today is
the Romanian deadlift when it comes to training the hamstrings I believe we
should have a mix of heavy and light hip extension and knee flexion exercises the
Romanian deadlift is a great hip extension exercise to go heavy with
because it’s easy to progressively overload and I believe there’s a
slightly lower injury risk when compared to the conventional deadlift the
Romanian deadlift has similarities to the conventional deadlift however there
is a smaller degree of knee extension which puts greater emphasis on the
hamstrings Romanian deadlifts can also be used as a lighter high rep hip
extension exercise which I prefer to do using dumbbells to increase the stretch
on the hamstrings we can elevate our toes using the plate you may feel
greater emphasis on the hamstrings using this method you only need to bring the
weight just below your knees to your shins
which prevents the lower back from dominating this movement I like to use
straps to prevent grip strength from limiting the amount of weight and
tension that can be applied to the hamstrings during this exercise here we
have another variation of the Romanian deadlift that you can ask your workout
unilateral movements have a number of benefits for example helping to prevent
muscle imbalances and reducing the risk of injury also if you play sports or you
just want to improve your balance then then it is vital that you include unilateral
exercises in your workout program because it is more difficult to
progressively overload with this exercise I recommend sticking to a
higher rep range of a relatively low weight so the good morning is another hip extension exercse that I recommened however if you’re new to
this movement then I recommend starting with a lighter weight work for more
high reps as you become more advanced and master the technique you can
consider going with a heavier weight with more mechanical tension in the 5 to 8 rep
range we start the good morning in a similar setup to the back squat however
once we descend we keep our legs stiff to remove any involvement from the
quadriceps to get the best hamtring development out of this movement and to
reduce the risk of injury control the descending phase with a slower pace this
will eccentrically contract the hamstrings and prevent our lower back from jerking
on the way back up eccentric contraction is the motion of legnthening our muscles
while under a load once you master the good morning it is a viable option as a
heavy hip extension movement however if you prefer it can be easily used as a
high rep lower weight exercise so now I’m going to move on to the knee
flexion exercises it’s important that we include knee flexion because of the
short head of the biceps femoris the short head does not cross the hip joint
so it’s not involved in hip extension therefore if we do not want to neglect
this muscle we must do some knee flexion movements the nordic ham curl is a
great bodyweight exercise that focuses on the eccentric phase of knee flexion
research shows that nordic hams curls are great for developing hamstring strength
and size despite being only a bodyweight exercise this exercise is great for
anyone involved in sports because they have been shown to reduce the risk of
hamstring injury and may improve sprinting speed if you do not have a
partner to hold down your ankles then you can use the lat pulldown machine as
I am demonstrating so nordic ham curls are one of my
favorite exercises however they can be extremely challenging making it
difficult to get an adequate enough amount of reps for the right amount of
volume therefore I recommend using a resistance band to provide some assistance as you’ll see I’m able to do more reps while using the resistance band
if you instantly fold during the nordic ham curl due to weak hamstrings or
you want to make this a higher rep exercise then I recommend using the
resistance man now we move on to the Machine leg curl
this is a simple knee flexion exercise which effectively isolates the
hamstrings some research shows that knee flexion exercises are more effective at
targeting the lower section of our hamstrings when compared to hip
extension exercises I have no particular preference between the lying and seated
machine leg curl at my gym they only have the one option so use whichever is
available to you if you have the option of using both then go over the one you
personally prefer or alternate between the two you can see in this part of the
video I am pointing to my feet slightly outwards this emphasizes the outer
region of the hamstrings we can also target the inner and medial regions by
pointing our feet inwards now the final exercise physio ball leg curl is quite
unique because it combines hip extension with knee flexion the hamstrings have to
work to keep the hips extended while also flexing the knee to bring the ball
backwards I was shown this exercise via physios when I was having issues with my
knee due to being quad dominant I like to do this exercise at the end of a
workout as a finisher so just to summarize I recommend doing four to six
of these exercises spread over two sessions combining both hip extension
and knee flexion exercises each session should involve one heavy movement and
one or two lighter higher rep movements thank you for tuning into my
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