hamstring development

I am slightly confused about hamstring development? As I understand the reverse leg press is the best way? In Charlies book the demo shown looks like a pulley system and you just pull the leg forward?
I was told by someone that a track athlete should not do the deadlift because it is a slow movement? Thanks for any help.

It depends on what DL variation you were advised not to do. For example, snatch grip DL is fast and has a reasonably high gluteal and hamstring involvement (compared to standard DL). This is mainly due to the wide grip, which in turn lowers the starting position, which ultimately makes it harder to get near your maximal capacity. Thus making the lift less stressful on your CNS.

Though if you were advised not to do standard DL, I personally would go with this advice. This is for the following reasons:

  1. Far too stressful on the CNS.
  2. Not as much hamstring and gluteal involvement as other ‘limit’ strength exercises.
  3. Too slow and
  4. Why do something when you can get better results from a different exercise ie squatting??

Hope this helps…

Dead lifts are not the evil beast…with a focus on posterior strength and unloading rep ranges they spell winner to me. Don’t do them near comp phases!

This is true Clemson, just that IMO, DL isn’t the best exercise you can do to improve limit strength-which is what DL is primarily designed to do. I’d much prefer to squat than dead lift

But is the squat working the posterior chain to the same extent? i wouldnt think so.

Personally i have never done deadlifts. We do squat, cleans, jerks, and sometimes snatch. For specific posterior chain work i do hypers with a 25 pound plate for 3 sets of 15. Is that sufficent work for posterior strength?

clean/snatch pulls are better than deadlifts IMO. Stricter form and more speed, plus minimal decceleration. Done with a locked arm style, ie no arm bend except the slight amount from the the bar momentuem. No yanking on the bar with arms.

And you can drop the bar or lower it fast between reps to minimise the eccentric if so desired. If you lift on oly platforms that is :slight_smile:

Very convincing everyone…options are key, not this is the only way to heaven! Deadlifts are great for various needs and since each movement is different…you can’t say one it the end all be all!

Do I understand correctly, if the clean and squat are used the deadlift is redundent. But the deadlift is useful as a change of pace.
I am still unclear about the hamstring development and the reverse leg press.

I do Reverse Leg Press (RLP) by facing away from a leg press machine (I use a universal gym machine) and push footpad away from me. Works well for me.

I also do clean grip deadlift and I am introducing snatch grip deadlifts, but they are more like snatch grip pulls (these I love).

You could also do Good Mornings.

About cleans and squats working the posterior chain? You need to be full squats or at least below parallel. Cleans do work, but maybe not as affective due to weight involved.

Just a thought.

Don’t forget deadlifts can be performed everywhere whereas the other movements mentioned require a solid floor -not always the case if you train at home ,or a squat-rack -try lifting all the weight you can manage from the floor and then when it is firmly placed on your neck/back have someone alternatly add weights on both sides ,not fun! or healthy. One of the keys to making gains is ofcourse longevity ,and that is where comfort and access and so on comes into play ,shifting your desicion on which movement to do from a teoretical point to a practical.
Most people fear deadlifting anyway…

Just out of curiosity, what are peoples thoughts on the importance of the range of the movement in regards to development. When at top speed and later acceleration the hip extends beyond the verticle angle it reaches in all the aforementioned movements save the reverse leg press. If power is being generated in this range in a running stride should we be looking at training this power in the gym?

A number of years ago, when I had my second hamstring injury I decided that winter to build it up properly with strength exercises.
I haad read that the ham curls were artifical and not the best exercise, so I decided to mimic the hamstring exercises as best I could.
I made a ‘shoe’ from wood, for myself so I could stand on a depth jump box, attach weights to it the shoe and perform a standing curl and heel raise in a movement that would mimic the running motion.
(I also used the same ‘shoe’ to try and build the hip flexor strength needed to rasie the knee faster in the belief it would help a quicker/stronger knee drive and faster ‘turnover’).
10 Fast reps of approx. 3 - 4 sets
I also tried looping a rope with a weight attched to my ankle to do the same exercises.
This was years before I undertood the concepts and benefits of deadlifts.
This - a strenuous stretching program - and almost no physio after the initial injury, help rehab my ham to proper strength and the year I had no problems at all.

more hip development but…

what does everyone think of doing hip isolated exercises?

i just started doing a lift in which i slip a triangle shaped handle around my ankle and perform knee drives up and out.
I think this will help for jumping events and early acceleration.
i do them in 2 sets of 10 or so with light to moderate weight. (35-40lbs)


Isn’t that basically a jump shrug?

No, there is no jumping :slight_smile:

You just pop up on your toes and full extend - body like a bow
Basicly like a powerclean without racking and the arms remain fairly straight, they only slightly bend from bar momentuem, but I keep my arms locked. You use more weight though and can do higher reps, since form breakdown is not as big a concern here.

I haven’t got particularly well developed hamstrings but was able to deadlift 150kg x 2 at about 80kg bodyweight last april .

Is it worth me bothering to build hamstring size when they seem pretty strong and never seem to be under much stress / tight . My glutes are pretty big by comparison lol .

Hmm well then a power shrug. You should post a video because it seems more like an assistance for the end of the second pull than a substitute for deadlifts or true clean/snatch pulls.

I have many times, take a look on Fortified iron :slight_smile:

Although I don’t do it properly. Don’t knock it till you try it!
Speed kills - they feel much harder than deadlifts even if the weight is lighter, but still somewhat heavy, the form is different, more like a fast squat with the bar in your hands in a way.

These are clean pulls, read Dreshler or watch any ironmind training hall tape and you will see the olylifters doing them. The arms hardly bend, bending the arms is just an invitation to upright “row the the bar” = not good for shoulders.

Your probably thinking of Clean HIGH Pulls

Rob - you’re learning… but are you lifting?

hmm well I want to see them done correctly then, work on your form…j/k

I guess I meant clean high pulls. I’ve never really done clean pulls though, only snatch pulls and the bar only went up to about the bottom of my rib cage.