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The hamstring stretch exercise stretches tight hamstrings responsible for poor pelvic motion while bending forward. Hamstring stretches also strengthen the back extensor muscles to keep the spine from excessively flexing. This exercise will help you develop awareness of excessive spinal flexion during daily activities.
To perform the hamstring stretch exercise while sitting, it's best to have a support to rest your spine against to help you monitor whether your spine is flexing during this exercise. Sit on a table with your back against a wall or in a high chair. Let your feet dangle or rest on the floor. Slowly straighten your left knee, making sure your spine does not flex. Create a stiff, straight spine; this will let you feel tightness in your hamstring sooner and more intensely. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds and repeat on the other side. Alternate 2 to 5 times per leg.
Sit on a sturdy chair and rest your right ankle on your left knee. Next, rest your right hand on your right ankle and your right elbow on your right knee. Lean forward and press your lower back toward your right calf while keeping your back straight. Look straight ahead. Hold for 15 seconds; reverse sides and repeat.
To perform a hamstring stretch while sitting, extend your leg out in front of you, actively pulling your foot towards your knee. Once in position, reach forward with the same-side hand, and try to touch your toe. You should feel a stretch in the back of your leg. Hold this for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side. Do this 2-3 times on both sides.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.