Four Hamstring Exercises For Leaner Legs

Four Hamstring Moves For Leaner Legs

100_1432As a personal trainer, I’m often asked which exercises work best to develop nice arms, shoulders, chest, back, or legs.  Well, there is so much conflicting information out there that I like to share what exercises I personally use and use on my clients to get them into such great shape.  Here are four exercises that will tighten those hamstrings and give you leaner legs overall.

1. Straight-Legged Deadlifts

Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart holding a dumbbell in each hand with an overhand grip. Without rounding your back, lower the weights toward the ground by hinging forward at the hips; keep a slight bend in your knees throughout the movement. Hold at the bottom to get a little stretch in your hamstrings then squeeze your glutes and stand up. This is one rep.

2.  Dumbbell Hamstring Curl

Lie face down on a flat bench and position yourself so that your knees are at the edge of the bench. Choose an appropriate dumbbell and set it on the ground near the lower end of the bench. Secure the dumbbell between the arches of your two feet. Your legs should be fully extended and you can wrap your arms around the bench for stability. This is the starting position.

Bending at the knees only, slowly curl the dumbbell up towards your buttocks. Raise the dumbbell as far as comfortably possible or just past 90 degrees. Pause for a moment and then lower the dumbbell in a controlled manner back to the starting position.

3. Bulgarian Split Squats

Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your arms fully extended at your sides.

With your feet shoulder-width apart, place the instep of your rear foot on a bench. Your feet should be approximately three feet apart. Lower your hips toward the floor so that your rear knee comes close to the floor. Pause and drive through your front heel to return back to the starting position.

4. Alternating Dumbbell Lunges

Stand up straight holding two dumbbells in your hands by your sides.

Step forward with one leg, around two feet or so from the foot being left stationary behind, and lower your upper body down while keeping your torso upright and maintaining balance. Do not allow your knee to go forward beyond your toes as you come down, keeping your front shin perpendicular to the ground. Push up off your heel and return to the starting position. Repeat the movement for the opposing leg.

For more tips on building stronger hamstrings for leaner legs, eating healthy, weight training, health and wellness, or if you’re frustrated with your current level of fitness and have been thinking about hiring a personal trainer, contact us.

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