How To Do The Hamstring Bench Curls Exercise

Benefits of the Hamstring Bench Curls

This is one of the leg strengthening exercises that works the muscles in the back of your thigh - the hamstrings. These muscles allow you to bend your knees, and control their motion as you walk. They are essential for walking. This leg workout is one of the best thigh exercises.

The primary muscles that are strengthened from this exercise are:

  • gluteus maximus (extends thigh)
  • biceps femoris (extends thigh)
  • semitendinosus (extends thigh)
  • semimembranosus (extends thigh)
  • piriformis (extends thigh)
  • and the adductor magnus (extends thigh)

Another benefit is that strengthening these muscles may prevent "Runner's Knee", which is also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome. According to Dr. Darin Padua in an article titled "Pinpointing the causes of 'runner's knee"", it is stated that weaker muscles behind the thighs are 2.9 times more likely to develop "Runner's Knee."

This is a great leg exercise, and is an excellent addition to any fitness routine.


For maximum intensity, you can exercise one leg at a time. However, if your legs are not strong enough yet, you can workout both legs at the same time.

Any stable, elevated surface can be used for this leg workout. I use an exercise bench, but on occasion will use a sturdy coffee table.

When you lift your torso up, keep your spine straight. Don't arch your back.

Workout Procedure

  1. Lie flat on a Pilates Mat or Exercise Mat with your hands at your sides

  2. Place your right foot on the elevated surface while keeping your left leg straight and in the air as shown
  3. If you will be exercising both legs at the same time, place both feet on the elevated surface
  4. Breathe in
  5. As you breathe out, lift your torso with your right leg until your knee forms a 90 degree angle, and your back forms a straight line with your right thigh

  6. Hold this position for several seconds while breathing normally
  7. Slowly lower to the starting position
  8. Do 8 to 12 repetitions
  9. Repeat this procedure for the left leg
  10. Do this exercise 3 times a week, every other day

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