Exercise Band Moves for Hamstrings and Low Back

A Resistance Band Warm Up for Your Hips

Woman works on her hamstring muscles using theraband.
Theraband can help you develop hamstring strength.. elbepictures

Resistance Band Warm Up

Warming up is before exercising in earnest is always a good idea.  When hamstring strength is what you're after, you can lie on your back (in a supine position) with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor.  Lift one leg up and place the resistance band around the bottom of your foot.  Hold one end of the band in each hand, giving it a little tension.  Starting with your knee bent, slowly extend your lower extremity to almost straight, then return to the bent knee position.  Repeat between 10 and 20 times.

FYI, the more you pull on the band with your hands, the more you increase the challenge.

Gently Challenge Hip Muscles with a Resistance Band

Woman uses an exercise band to work her hip muscles.
Use an exercise band tied to something stable behind you to work your hamstrings and other hip muscles.. photographee

Beginners Exercise for Hamstrings and Quads using a Resistance Band

If you're a beginner, weak or you're returning to exercise after time away (for whatever reason), consider starting with this simple hamstring and quad strengthener.  

Tie the ends of the resistance band to a stable structure that will be located behind your head. Lie on your back.  Bend the knee and hip of one leg and bring it towards you.  Repeat this action with the second leg.  Place the middle of the resistance band around your the bottom of your feet.

Slowly push your legs out until your hips and knees are almost straight. Then slowly return them to the start position.  Do between 10 and 20 of these to start.

A variation of this exercise is to do little pulses that don't go out all the way.  This may strengthen you hamstrings where they attach at the hip (called the muscle origin,) which will likely help your posture and may help decrease certain kinds of low back pain.

Resistance Band Exercise for Weak Cores

Woman performs a 1 legged hamstring strengthening exercise using a resistance band.
If your core is weak, try the supine one legged hamstring strengthening exercise with resistance band.. Nick_Freund

Weak in the Core?  Try a One-Legged Modification

If you're very weak in the core, a double legged challenge may be too much at first.  Instead, try working one leg at a time.  As you develop more strength, you can progress to the double legged version.  

The image also shows you another way to position the resistance band.  In this case, the model is holding the ends of the band in each hand, which means she is using arm muscles (and possibly her upper core muscles, as well) to provide stabilization so the legs can move against the resistance provided by the band.

Note that the model, who is in the supine position (on her back) has the leg that is not in use bent at the knee, with her foot flat on the floor.

Learn how to Establish Core Support and how to Activate your Deep Abdominals.

Use the Resistance Band to Get the Butt Muscles, but Good!

Woman uses tubing to strengthen hamstring muscles while in the all 4s position.
Use a resistance band or tubing in the all 4s position.. starush

The Resistance Band - A Great Tool for Getting Your Butt Muscles

If you keep your form while doing this one, you'll likely really "get" the hamstring muscles right under the butt.  As mentioned earlier, this can help you with low back problems related to lack of hamstring support.

Position yourself on your forearms and knees.  Slightly lift up one knee and place the band around the bottom of the foot, holding the ends of the resistance band in your hands.  Slowly extend the leg out to almost straight, and slowly return it to the start position. Do about 10-20 reps.

Resistance Band Moderated Straight Leg Lift

Women work their hamstrings using bands.
Straight legged hamstring work with resistance bands can be very effective.. lofilolo

Resistance Band Moderated Straight Leg Lift

One way to get a very effective hamstring workout is to lie on your back (the supine position,) and bring one leg up to about 90 degrees.  The knee should be straight but not locked. Wrap the resistance band around your foot, and hold the ends in your hands.  Keeping the leg straight.slowly lower it against the resistance, and then bring it back up.  

The key with this one is to keep the action happening in the hip joint and to not to let your pelvis or trunk move and the lower extremity moves.

Advanced Resistance Band Challenges for Your Hamstrings and Core

Therapists helps a man challenge his hamstring muscles using theraband
Challenge your hamstring muscles with theraband and a good physical therapist.. Henglein and Steets/Cultura/Getty Images

 Advanced Resistance Band Challenges 

Once you've progressed your workout and are feeling strong, consider use the resistance band to combine ab and hamstring work.  In the image above, the model's trunk position is likely demanding a lot of work from his abs.  Along with this he has the resistance band around one foot, and challenges his balance by extending the lower extremity in and out.

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