Ok guys this is often one of the most neglected muscle that a male bodybuilder or physique athlete often posses!

 

I have often seen massive full sweeping quads on many competitive and none competitive guys but to only turn to the side with very flat pretty much none existent hamstring development.

 

Pretty much like one of my new clients that came to me Just the other week, massive quads no hamstrings

 

So why is this happening and what are the steps to get those full rounded drooping leg biceps?

 

Firstly the number one thing is often hamstring are just an after thought after a heavy quad or back sessions so quite often they will just get tickled with 3-4 sets of eight reps, which is no where near enough to stimulate growth,

 

So the number 1 thing is they need to be made a priority, placing them before a quad workout, training them on a totally different day or increasing the frequency of training i.e. multiple times of the week.

 

Your going to hear the frequency thing a lot when I talk about bringing up week body parts, which I am a big believer in.  I

 

ll have to explain why in a whole other article, but trust me it works if done properly!

 

Secondly execution of the exercise is vital all to often when assessing someone’s movement patterns during a hamstring exercises its either the Erectors of the lower back or the glutes doing the bulk of the work.

 

Lets take the most popular performed hamstring exercises for example, the lying leg curl

 

Lying leg curl

 

What I often see…

 

Weight too heavy, no control of the movement during the eccentric phase (lowering portion), the movement initiated with a pull from the biceps and back, second half of the movement the glutes take over. So all in all with this exercise the hamstrings are being recruited very little throughout the movement.

 

What I should see

 

-       Braced position against the bench

-       Hips pushed into the bench and staying fixed in this position throughout the whole movement

 

-       Quads contracted at the start of the movement

 

 

-       Toes pulled in towards the shins

 

-       Knees not in contact with the bench

 

 

-       Controlled strong curl action taking 1-2 seconds on the concentric

 

-       Keeping the knees lifted throughout the curl action and hips in the extend position

 

 

-       Controlled eccentric phase lasting 4 seconds

 

-       During the eccentric for the more advanced point the toes away and then pull back in at the bottom of the movement

 

 

-       At the bottom of the movement contract the quads as hard as you can so the hamstrings finish in the fully lengthened position.

 

-       That’s how to fully isolate the hamstrings in the leg curl and work it through the full muscular range of motion.

 

 

-       Often I will then get my clients to perform a ham curl allowing the glutes to become involved (hip Flexed) but must be performed in a controlled manner.

 

This allowing the muscle to feel some added weight and what often happens if done correctly is the that hamstring should start to be more heavy recruited as doing the movement in the hips extended position fires up the neural pathways due to the isolation and then this is carried over to the heavy hips flexed movement!

 

This is a little trick you can do to any muscle group which was taught to me by my good friend and physiotherapist Rodger Cleary a couple of years ago when I was trying to bring up my rear dealts (ill explain that routine in another article)

 

So isolate the weak muscle with a true isolation exercise involving 4-10s eccentric’s reps of 12 x 4 sets with lighter weights.

Then once the muscle is fired up and you are feeling the intended muscle moving the weight move onto heavy loads but still maintain the control through the movement.

 

Below is a sample hamstring exercise routines and workout calendar for bringing up the weaker areas. Like I said earlier I will explain increased frequency training in a later article.

 

Workout 1

 

 

Exercise

Reps

Sets

Tempo

Rest

A1

Lying le curl (in extension)

12

4

4010

 

A2

Lying leg curl (flexion)

8

4

2011

60s

B1

Seated Hamstring Curls

8

4

4010

40s

C1

Stiff legged Dead lifts

20

4

2010

40s

 

 Workout 2

 

 

Exercise

Reps

Sets

Tempo

Rest

A1

Lying leg curl (in ext)

8

4

4010

 

A2

Wide High leg press

12

4

4010

 

A3

Bench step Push backs

12

4

4010

 

A4

Stiff legged Dead lifts

12

4

4010

3 MINS

 

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