restore: the legs program



Let’s talk about our hamstrings:

The hamstring muscle group has multiple roles in running and can certainly be the site of numerous chronic nagging injuries, especially if we don’t take care of business in both supplemental training and in our sports training.

  • The hamstrings are loaded and stretched eccentrically during the swing phase of the gait cycle – its job is to, in essence, slow-down or decelerate the forward swinging leg.

This is when this muscle can become strained during high-speed running. If a sprinter has a hamstring injury, it usually occurs during the swing phase.

  • The hamstrings also act to extend the hip, but importantly, aren’t the primary driver during this action – the glutes are. So in effect, the hamstrings are synergists to the glutes.

This is why I present glute/hip stability as a primary focus during basic and fundamental training progression.

The ideal training progression is:

1. Establish optimal core and hip stability and strength.

2. Incorporate the hamstrings to increase the dynamic challenge and reinforce the synergistic action of the hips and legs.

  • The training GOAL for this muscle group (and the others as well) is to move toward 1-leg movements, even though we always begin with 2-leg movements and exercises.

Increasing dynamic challenge and load means to move to single side/1-leg movements.