Working the Hamstrings: How to Build Strong Legs
Welcome to the blog! I’m Trevor Theismann for KBands Training, and for today’s workout, we’ll be moving through some exercises designed to target the hamstrings and build strong legs. A workout focused on strong legs can be an important move for those with knee problems, since strong legs can help stabilize knees and reduce the chance of further injury. Strong legs can also be an issue for those with a muscle imbalance; some sports tend to build the quads to powerful proportions while neglecting the hamstrings. Strong leg exercises like these can help reset that imbalance and get our legs where they need to be.
For today’s session, we’ll need some floor space and a set of Kbands fastened securely to both thighs above the knee. Ready to build strong legs? Let’s get started.
|Workout Reps||Workout Sets|
Alternating Reverse Lunge
Building Strong Legs: The Alternating Reverse Lunge
Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, then place your weight on your right leg and move your left leg behind you. Center your weight between both legs and drop down until your left knee almost touches the floor. Keep your hands neutrally positioned in front of you for balance. To gain the full benefit of the move and develop strong legs, keep your weight on your front leg as your stand back up.
Form is more important than pace with this move, so don’t rush. Extend your leg behind you as much as possible for really strong legs. Don’t just step back a few inches—cover some distance and execute a full lunge. Repeat this leg exercise on alternating sides for about 35 to 40 seconds.
Building Strong Legs: The Forward RDL
For really strong legs, we’ll focus this move on one leg at a time. Place all your weight on your right leg and lift your left leg straight out behind you, extending your arms forward for balance. As you do this move, keep your back straight and parallel to the ground. And keep your raised leg extended. Don’t let your knee bend or your leg sag to the floor.
For strong legs on both sides, repeat the RDL for 30 seconds on your right leg, and then switch to the left for 30 more seconds.
Building Strong Legs: The Bird Dog
Move to all fours with your knees and palms on the floor. Lift and extend your left arm and right leg at the same time. Keep both arm and leg extended for three full seconds. Feel the burn in your glutes and hamstrings? Now lift your right arm and left leg. This move can help you build strong legs and improve your balance, but remember to keep your heel flexed—don’t point your toes. Repeat the move 20 times for each diagonal.
Strong legs are balanced legs, so use exercises like these to help the glutes and hamstrings keep up with the quads. An equal focus on all areas can mean strong legs, better balance, and better all-around performance. It also means better protection for the knees during intense activity.
To build and maintain strong legs, try these leg exercises two to three times a week.
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Enjoy the workout!