Strong hamstrings, weak glutes: Hi all. Having... - Couch to 5K

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Strong hamstrings, weak glutes


Hi all.

Having mildly strained both glutes, while my hamstrings are absolutely fine, it's become very obvious that my glutes are considerably weaker than my hamstrings. My background in martial arts kind of means I've known that for a long time (certain stances fatigue me very quickly) but I've been burying my head in the sand. I kind of foolishly figured that if I let all my other muscles develop, my glutes will naturally follow. It's not the case. The body doesn't work like that. It compensates for weaknesses by redirecting forces through stronger muscles that achieve a similar action. All well and good until you try to stretch your hamstrings, and due to the vastly greater strength of them compared to the butt, the hamstrings don't stretch and the glutes over stretch and become mildly injured.

If I was to address this imbalance by running, does anyone have any suggestions on terrain or form or anything that will specifically load the glutes more than the hamstrings?

7 Replies

I would think you probably need to get over the strain, and then plenty of bridge exercises to strengthen the glutes. There is the glute challenge on the below link but get the strain right before you start. Good luck runner👍🏼

Ps it also says hill training is good to strengthen glutes..... but remember build slow and steady.

Hidden in reply to Millsie-J

Hill running looks perfect. The article says it trains the glutes, calves and quads. All of which could do with a boost in my case.

The next challenge is to find a scenic hill. I live somewhere so flat it's like it's 2 dimensional :)

There's some hills a few miles away I could drive to.

Millsie-JGraduate in reply to Hidden

Brilliant. Please start steady, if you do hill repeats dont do too many to start, build them over weeks👍🏼 Also worth looking up Kenyon hills, which is a slightly different hill training system.

Millsie-JGraduate in reply to Millsie-J

Ps .... try those bridges!


Front crawl (swimming) legs if done properly, i.e. from the hips work the glutes but from your other posts, I don't think you need another type of exercise added in. Hard to reproduce on land as you don't get the resistance against the water on the downwards part (have tried).

try this. This'll sort your ass out in double quick time.

Hidden in reply to Rignold

That looks like an epic twist on some very old exercises.

One of the key tools for lower body training in martial arts is stances. As an aside, some people see the often impractical stances we do in martial arts and think it's a load of rubbish, because it's not always made clear that you don't sink into a low stance if you have to use it, we just train like that to build leg strength. But anyway, I digress. One of the main ones is the horse stance or horse riding stance. That's basically what they guys in the video are doing, except whereas we tend to do it fairly statically and only using our bodyweight, the guys in the video are adding it additional resistance and some dynamics. It looks like an awesome plan.

The only thing that made me cringe slightly was where he had the elastic strap anchoring his groin to the floor. Imagine if that elastic snapped or came loose at the floor end right when it's under max tension. It brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it :)

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