The Glute Ham Raise is Overrated

think about a strinde in the sprint, its not simple hip extension or knee flexion. it is a complex and intricate combination of both. i believe the reason the bench can be so beneficial is because when done right it trains the proper neurology necessary for a effecient sprinting motor pattern.

So are we saying that the GHR doesn’t train hip extention apart from statically?

And also - do we need to train knee flexion at all?

no… yes you need to differentiate which one you are talking about. ghr on a bench trains hip extension greatly.

James it looks like your attached picture has the guy doing hyperextensions that focus mostly on the back.

When we do GHR-Glued Ham Raise we always keep our knees bent and torso parralel with hips, this exercise really works the posterior chain, I think this is a similar execise to reverse hypers, but we also work our hamstrings with powercleans, clean pulls, and rdls.

In the charlie Francis training system, charlie says we should put the hamstring function of hip extension before, before knee flexion. I would not say this means to neglect one, just to emphasize one.

if performed on the wrong bench then yes they are nothing more than a glorified hyperextension. properly built benches will alow for maximum stress on the hamstrings. this has to do with the proper foot plate and angle of the bench pad. i dont kno how many of you have done ghr on a bench (or for that matter on a properly built bench) but if you do them you will understand what im talking about. i shy away from saying one function is more important over another in a biarticular muscle group simply because its very subjective. train the body how it is to be used, train movements and the body will take on the proper proportion and strength . the problem with training hip extension primarilt with large compund movements such as deadlifts, cleans ect. is that often times the body can compensate for its weakness in this area and may not be recruiting the groups properly. this can occur with the ght also but it is easier to identify and fix. but like ive said in the past its just a single tool used to build and athlete, near everything has a time and place in training, knowing when and where is what coaching ability is all about.

Can you suggest a good bench manufacturer? Thank!

Elitefts in my opinion is the best.
We got a cheap one from powersystems and its pretty shitty

the yessis machine is the original and is the way the machine is meant to be made. the elitefts machine i believe is just is good but i dont know for sure. the prices are about the same and the yessis price includes shipping so you may want to go with that one. to check you can call elitefts and ask how it compares to the yessis machine, ask to compare par angle and foot pad/

EliteFTS GHR models

The exercise

i usually just do a nat. glute ham raise while supporting my feet at the edge of a bed or power rack pin… is this kind of GHR still effective?

its NOT the same as a ght on a bench but yes it is a valid and useful training method.

BTW, if a GHR bench is built properly (and the athlete has good form), there will be hip extension. (This is due to the angle of the pad). The .GIF file does not show this.

Is there any need to train knee-flexion function of the hams anyway?
It may seem that they activelly flex the knee during the run (during the recovery of the leg), but actually the flexing torque is from inertiall forcess created by hip flexio (motion dependent effect)… So, hams DO NOT FLEX THE KNEE during the recovery phase… also, according to Weyand, faster speed are created by larger and faster ground contact forces and not smaller swing time!
My opinions is that training hams as hip extensor will have just enough transfer to knee flexion function, altough knee flexion training can be done as an auxilary training with small volume/emphasis!

This is the basis for this thread!

simply yes its important. to what degree is the determinate of the event. you need to remmeber that musces dont always create movement sometimes they act to cease movement. if they couldnt act in this dual role joint damage would occur all the time.

I have nothing against to do couple of GHR exercises as auxilary work, but the main emphasis should be on hip extension movements…

mmmm im being a stickler on this one becasue technically you are right but everything is contextual. its incorrect to say something is more important than another. i dont believe in auxilary work as a term. knee flexion should be given as much consideration as any other movement simply becasue it is a component of development.

Duxx I think the GHR although being a auxillary lift does work the Hams as a hip extensor.

Also wouldn’t more ground contact lead to a slower time? (contact=deceleration), isn’t the idea to run on the toes to minimize ground contact so you can “fly”.

Ham curls where the eccentric is emphasised seem to be very effective in my experience. One major problem with ham curl is the design of some machines. If the bench you lie on is flat then the effort is purely from the knee if there is a ridge causing the hips to be raised then you get a hip extension component even if the hips are not seen moving actively.

I found that ham curls done with an emphasis on curling to the gluts EXPLOSIVELY (CONCENTRIC PHASE) two legged but lowering with one leg slowly, is very very effective. Also ; an intra-set PAUSE between each rep of 3-8 secs seems to ensure that each rep is “explosive” and there is no decrement in strength and power development from the first rep to the last ensuring that strength/explosiveness is being developed as opposed to serial repetitions which lead to fatigue before the last reps and so more likely to be strength endurance. I found that by doing ham curls this way, you are able to benefit and actually see a link between max speed and maintenance in the sprint and hamstring strength in the gym. What is also interesting is that if you are not concentrating on improving the strength of the abdominals prior to this way of training the hams then benefits are hit and miss. One leg hops with a slight knee bend (emphasis on the knee always slightly bent) seem to also contribute to effects of the ham curl method I have mentioned above.

The sets are much longer than usual ham curl sets, you must resist the urge to rep out continuosly because others are watching you… Ham curls seem to be effective only when you can get some hip extension component into the action and you accentuate the eccentric by lowering one legged and raising explosively two legged with a 3-8 sec pause between each rep.

A word of caution…the exercise by its nature can be very dangerous and so light weights (40-50%) must be attempted first befroe progressing on heavier weights.

he was saying greater force not time. and you dont run on your toes you run on the balls of your feet. ground contact time has more to do with explosive isometric strength and how much force you can effeceinty absorb.