Hamstrings are quite an underrated group of muscles among runners. They usually focus on strengthening their quads. But, strong hamstring muscles enable an athlete, especially a runner make the most of their running mechanics. You can propel forward with each stride and prevent the knee from hyperextending at the same time while running if your hamstring muscles are strong enough. In short, hamstrings help stabilize the knee at each point of contact with the ground. Thus, hamstring stretches are critical for runners to maintain optimal performance.
Injuries are common among runners. But you can prevent them with stronger hamstrings. You can run faster and achieve your running goals faster with fit hamstring muscles.
What is the Right Hamstring Stretches for Runners?
Hamstring muscles help you run better, faster and more efficiently. And stretching those muscles before the big game improves your running performance and helps you prevent injuries. Thus, here are the three best hamstring stretches that help runners discover their full potential.
Cross Over Hamstring Stretch
How to perform?
- Stand with a straight back and your feet lined up close together.
- Cross the right foot over the left.
- Lower the upper part of the body towards your feet.
- Bend your knees slowly and slightly while doing so.
- Touch your toes with your fingers.
- Hold the position for 45-60 seconds.
- Repeat the same with another leg.
This exercise involves your entire lower back, calf muscles and hamstrings. It also protects the spine and improves your range of motion in the hips.
Double Leg Bridge
How to perform?
- Lay flat on the back.
- Your feet should be close to your hips.
- Engage your hamstrings and glutes by pushing the hips up.
- Hold the position for 30 seconds.
This is a basic yet effective exercise to engage the glutes and hamstrings. It also guides you on how to lift your hips while supporting the back with both feet.
Triangle Forward Fold Hamstring Stretch
How to perform?
- Stand straight, keeping your feet slightly wider than your shoulders. \
- Touch your right toe first.
- Hold the position for about 60 seconds.
- Bring yourself to the starting point slowly.
- Repeat the same with your left toe.
This hamstring stretching exercise engages the core muscles along with the hamstring muscles. It opens up the hamstrings, lower back, hips, quadriceps, and pelvic floor.
Hamstring stretching exercises are essential for runners to give their best performance. These muscles help move your leg and improve your efficiency as a runner. Thus, consult with your physiotherapist to learn which hamstring stretches are suitable for you.
Looking for a Sports Physiotherapist Near Brampton?
Hamstring muscles play a crucial role in running. Thus, runners should focus on hamstring stretches for optimal performance in the field. Physiotherapy First is here to guide you through the right hamstring stretches according to your running goals. Our certified physiotherapists help you perform hamstring exercises and boost your athletic performance.