- Do you get cramps when exercising or in bed?
- Do your Hamstrings tighten up and hold you back?
- Do you injure your Hamstrings when you exercise?
Hamstring Stretches With The Tool
The Hamstrings are particularly susceptible to tight fascia because of their long length which allows for areas of extra tightness and areas of weakness where tears can occur. This muscle length also makes the Hamstrings much easier to stretch sideways which helps break up the trigger points and stretch the fascia perpendicular to the length of the muscle. This perpendicular pressure on the muscle in my clinical opinion is one of the best ways to loosen up muscles that are resistant to treatment and are often chronically sore and weak.
You can stretch the muscle sideways which is a unique feature of the Mobilization Magic™ hamstring massage tool by rolling your leg left or right until the side of the muscle is on the hamstring massage tool this helps stretch the fascial skeleton of the muscle.
When first using the Mobilization Magic™ hamstring massage tool, start by using the tool for only a few minutes and not in the sorest area first, so you can gauge how the muscle or joint will react to the tool.
Once you are comfortable using the hamstring stretch tool you can increase the time spent on the tool in 5 min increments on it up to 30 minutes. Keep the tool in one spot until the pain or discomfort/tightness has gone or markedly reduced.
Firstly have the massage tool in the Tall option under the lower half of the hamstring, you can increase the pressure over time by putting your second leg on top of the first leg.
Secondly have the short option under the upper hamstring near the attachment to the pelvis, make sure you are sitting upright preferably with your back up against a wall so the tool gives max pressure and you are more relaxed. Tilt your body to the left or right to do sideways stretching
Loosening up the very tight fascia
The MM tool works very well on loosening up the very tight fascia that normally causes tightness, pain and disability in the Hamstrings. Start off with the lower half of the hamstrings on the tall option and the upper half of the hamstrings on the short option depending on where your problem is.
When using the short option you can sit up right to increase the pressure it produces. Put the tool under the problem area for a minute or so, if there are no issues slowly increase the amount of time on the tool to make sure your tight hamstrings tolerates this pressure. If the pressure of one leg is not enough then put your other leg on top of the first leg.
The fascia in a Hamstring stretch is so strong it is not a 5-minute job to get the results you want. As a Physical Therapist experience has shown that excellent results can be achieved if you spend at least 30 minutes on the tool, multiple times during the week.
You can stretch your hamstrings in a sideways direction by rotating your foot to one side and moving your body in the same direction. Rock backwards and forwards until you feel the hamstring massage tool on the side of the muscle then hold that position, this will push the muscle in a unique way that cannot be done by other approaches.
Stretch your hamstrings whilst watching TV or doing other things like reading or working on the laptop makes the time pass quickly. A warm hamstring stretches much quicker than a cold one so using a hot pack or having hot bath helps a lot.
Caution: If you feel pins and needles, numbness, move the tool to another spot.
This is the Best Hamstring Stretch in the World!
I say that because so many stretches you see on the internet put the spine under pressure which is a bad fault in that stretch. The definition of a good stretch is one that only stretches the target muscle and protects all other structures, especially your spine and can be easily progressed to a stronger stretch. The set up of this stretch is very important because if you do not do what is recommended you may put pressure on your spine or not stretch the muscle very effectively. If you have a hot pack or are willing to buy one a warm muscle stretches much faster than a cold one, alternately have a hot bath before you do it. Start the by standing next to a table. Put the foot of the leg you are stretching up on the table preferably on a towel, hold on to a chair to help you keep your balance. Have the weight bearing foot that is going to be on the floor pointing at your other foot on the table, this locks your pelvis which protects your spine from the strong forces of the stretch.
Most other stretches have the foot on the ground pointing out at a 45 degree angle which puts your spine at risk by unlocking your pelvis. Make sure the weight bearing knee is pushed back as far as it would normally be if you were standing. If you cannot do that the table is too high and you should put your foot on a chair or other lower structure. Stand straight so your spine is in a relaxed position, you should feel a strong pull on the hamstring. If not slide the foot that is on the table away from you whilst keeping your back and knees straight. The more you slide away from yourself the stronger the stretch will be. Breath deeply while you are stretching as this will help relax the hamstring so it can be stretched easily. Hold the stretch for the first time for one minute as you do it more you can extend the period of stretch to whatever you feel is helpful.