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News From runnersworld.co.uk

What are the best exercises for stronger hamstrings?

According to new research published in the American Council on Exercise, a team of researchers in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of Wisconsin-La Cross looked at the most effective exercises to strengthen hamstrings in minimal time.

The results deemed three exercises significantly more effective than the rest:

1. Kettlebell swings

2. Single-arm/single-leg Romanian deadlifts

3. The prone leg curl

The results found that these three exercises stimulate the hamstrings similarly and may be used interchangeably, as part of a strength building workout for runners. Researchers recommended the prone leg curl for average gym goers, as it is the easiest to perform with proper form.”

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Kettlebell Krusher’s Take:

The kettlebell swing is one of the most popular kettlebell exercises. Usually comprised of two variants – The American Kettlebell Swing and the Russian Kettlebell Swing, both are excellent at working out many muscles at the same time. If you’re a long-distance runner, you know how important it is to keep your hamstrings and quads healthy. Performing those top 3 exercises is a great way to ensure to do just that.

What I find particularly interesting about this research study is how hamstring-specific exercises failed to crack the top 3. I’m referring to the Glute-hamstrings raise with a machine and Glute-hamstrings raise without equipment. How is it possible that an exercise specifically designed to improve hamstring strength isn’t at the top of the list? It’s a head-scratcher for sure.

The American Council on Exercise, who performed the study, recommends the prone leg curl, for beginners due to how easy it is. While this may be true, a machine is still needed to do the prone leg curl. Therefore, you would most likely need to go to a gym, which could be an inconvenience. On the other hand, a kettlebell can be purchased at an affordable cost which you can take with you anywhere. Yes, you’ll need to learn the proper technique to do a kettlebell swing, but there are plenty of videos and tutorials online to help with that.

Ryan Faucher

I'm a web designer and kettlebell enthusiast on a quest to lose fat, build muscles and live a healthier lifestyle. I truly believe that exercising with kettlebells in conjunction with dieting is the most effective and efficient way to reach this goal. If you have the will and motivation, there is no reason you can't do the same.
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