View Full Version : In search of alternate hamstring stretch

07-04-2007, 08:53 PM
After 2 months on the new Schwinn Revolution SRs, I have decided there isn't enough room on the bike frame between the seatpost and the handlebars to prop your foot up safely to stretch the hamstring (a la the SIM). With that water bottle thing (that the water bottle falls out of lol) there, there just isn't room and people (including me) were slipping off.

So I'm looking for an alternate, deep stretch for the hamstring. I tried the non-support leg out straight in front (no bike involved) with heel out and foot flexed and leaning forward with support knee slightly bent, and got the complaint "not deep enough".

Any thoughts? Thanks!

07-04-2007, 09:35 PM
I'm guessing that there isn't room to sit on the floor and stretch, so try this:

Stand and cross your right foot in front of your left.
Lace your fingers behind your back.
Slowly lower your forehead to your right knee, raising your arms as you go.
Repeat, crossing the left foot in front of the right.

07-05-2007, 03:15 AM
I would suggest that if your class are not getting deep enough, then their technique is a little off, in the straight leg out front ham stretch.
The biggest fault is people rounding their backs. I always cue a tall spine, flex from the hip, shoulders drifting toward knees. When breathing in extend the spine, head away from ass, shoulders down toward ass, breathe out & flex forward, allow the drift to knees to continue until no futher movement is poss, then the hand opposite to the front leg (straight leg ie L leg st thus R hand) comes off support role on R leg, and reaches down to the ankle of the st (Left) leg, reach to the far side of that ankle, grasp lightly, and gently 'pull' yourself down, this shifts the pelvis slightly, and switches the stretch slightly to the inner hams, keep flexing forward, still with a straight back, if you want deeper still, push the hip of the left leg away from your midline, again a slight shift of the pelvis/lower back & a switch across the inner hams. Try it they will groan, but they love it really.
If there is room to sit or lay down then a whole world opens up...hope this helps.

07-05-2007, 07:44 AM
You're right, no room to sit or lie down.

I will try both and see if it gets us where we want to be. I refuse to allow them to stretch on the handlebars themselves :eek:, thus I'm looking for a standing non-bike alternative. Thank you!

07-05-2007, 02:24 PM
As Brit says above, you want to push the pelvis back slightly. This is a great way to increase the stretch and make it deeper. Here's another way to cue it. I ask them to keep their backs straight, and flex forward at the hip joint, belly button towards the thigh, shoulders towards the toes. There should be no rounding at the low back. Once they reach their furthest point, then simply ask them to tilt the tailbone to the wall behind them, and you've just lengthened the hamstring. It's imperceptible to anyone watching, but deep enough to feel it yourself.


07-05-2007, 02:37 PM
The alternate I use sometimes just because is:

comfortable runner's crouch, one foot in front of the other, fingertips on the floor
suck in the belly button
raise your hips straight up until you feel the stretch on the hamstring of the front leg, keeping fingers on the floor
relax, switch feet, repeat

I watched a German speedskater (top-level athlete) using this as an active stretch once, slow-walking while remaining primarily bent over. If someone else uses this stretch and other cues, I'd be interested in hearing them.


07-06-2007, 10:08 AM
I need to try some of these when I'm not in my cube at work! :D I have a few to pick from now. Thank you again!

08-10-2007, 07:47 PM
Downward Facing dog is excellent in so many respects. If familiar with yoga, walk them through it.