Ah, hammies (aka your hamstrings). These muscles (yep, there are actually three of them) give the backs of your legs their curve and your booty that nice lift. Okay, but aesthetics aside, this muscle group is important for a lot of other reasons. Weak hamstrings make it tough to run, kick, pivot, and decelerate, she says. Plus, ignoring them could make you more susceptible to injuries such as ACL tears. Read: HOW TO MASTER THE SINGLE-LEG SQUAT.
Here are six ways you can work your hamstrings without having to do deadlifts. (Read: SHOULD YOU ADD COLLAGEN TO YOUR DIET?)
How it works: Move through each hamstring exercise below, completing the allotted number of reps. Then repeat the entire workout twice more for a total of 3 rounds. Rest between sets as needed. (You can also add some of the below hamstring exercises to your leg-day workout or gym routine.)
What you’ll need: Mid-height box (or chair); mini band; stability ball
1. Bulgarian Split Squat
This powerful single-leg exercise is a surefire way to improve balance and stability. (Read: 5 BREATHING TECHNIQUES FOR BETTER BODY RESULTS)
A. Stand facing away from a 20- to 36-inch-high box, and place top of rear foot on box.
B. Lower hips toward floor so rear knee comes close to floor. Pause when rear knee is close to floor and front quad is parallel with floor.
C. Drive through front heel to return to starting position.
Do 8 to 10 reps per side.
Complete 3 sets on each leg.