Plyometrics for hamstrings

I feel that plyometrics such as bounding are great for eplosive power over the first 20m, but after 20-30m when the hamstrings become involved to a much greater extent they are of far less benefit. Does anyone use SSC exercises for the hamstrings such as fast flexion to extension leg swings, or actually cycling one leg very fast as in the swing phase of sprinting, or are they too dangerous?

I use these exercises at a moderately fast speed in warm up but was wondering if the hip extensors would benefit from being trained with more force applied to the SSC.


Sorry. SCC should have been SSC for stretch shortening cycle. I have now edited in the original post.

Thanks, Tom

Plyos at a moderately fast speed in the warm-up? Now you have to warm-up to warm-up. Also, whenever you “speed up” plyos, you’re on a trip up the proverbial creek without a paddle (witness the tight hip flexors). Every plyo drill has its own natural rythem which will generate the optimal (shortest) ground contact time. This natural optimal rate of execution will almost never be generated by fast movement through the air.


If you are trying to mimick the swing phase were there is no ground contact, the hamstring plyo’s mentioned above are effective, but should be done at a moderate pace to avoid injury?

How about hamstring exercises with a medicine ball. How are leg throws conducted?

I think hamstring med ball throws mainly target the hamstrings as knee flexors. Stood up with ball between heels - then aim to flip the ball over head by jumping and flexing knees.

Does everyone just perform bounding/ jumping style plyo’s which mainly affect the quads and glutes? What about after 20 metres when the hamstrings become very important - are plyo’s not warranted for the hamstrings for this part of the sprint?

Plyo’s for hamstrings in the GPP phase may also help to develop the muscle which may lessen hamstring injury risk. Apparently hamstring injuries occur during the stretch shortening cycle at the end of the swing phase - I know there is often a back involvment (neural referment) but surely it would help if the hamstring was conditioned to withstand high forces.

One example of a Med Ball excercise for Hammies is where the athlete lies on their tummy and a partner stands facing their legs and rolls the med ball down the athletes leg. When the ball reaches the athletes feet he flicks the ball up to his partner by dynamically contracting his hammies(leg flexion). An effective excercise when done correctly.

But beware…

I was performing this once and my ‘partner’ missed the catch and with me lying with my face to the ground, not only did I get a whack in the back of the head with a 4kg med ball, I got my face mashed into the ground. My nose will have to be surgically straightened :frowning: …needless to say I will NEVER do this excercise again.

Moral of the Story: choose your training partner carefully :sing:

good point gf, i witnessed a girl bite her tongue because the partner didnt catch the med ball.