Many people who are older, or just too tight, have trouble getting into the proper positions that allow the hamstrings to be stretched properly. Despite their best efforts, some people are just not in a place where they can benefit from the some of the stretches, that in theory are better, but in reality provide little benefit.
The great thing about this stretch is that ANYONE CAN DO IT regardless of how old or how stiff you are. So if you've had trouble on my Best Hamstring Stretches page, have no fear. This is the stretch for you!
Go directly to the Hamstring Stretch video on this page by clicking here.
This stretch is done sitting on the edge of a chair or bench. Some folks ask if they can do it off the edge of their bed, and if this is what you need to get moving in the morning then that is fine, but most mattresses are a bit softer than the edge of a chair or a stool, so make sure you don't get swallowed up by your mattress and not get a good stretch.
If you do the stretch on the edge of a chair or bench and get a good feel for it first, then doing off the edge of your mattress has a much greater chance of successfully freeing your hamstrings with this stretch.
Lastly, so it may sound obvious, but also make sure you are not wearing clothes that are too tight or it may affect your ability to do this stretch. Okay, here's how to do the stretch:
1. Sit on the edge of a chair or bench.
2. For the leg NOT being stretched. Bend your knee at at about 90 degree angle (just find what's comfortable for you) and place your foot comfortably, but firmly, on the floor.
4. While KEEPING YOUR LEG STRAIGHT, flex your foot back towards your chin.
While KEEPING YOUR LEG STRAIGHT
and KEEPING YOUR FOOT FLEXED,
and KEEPING YOUR BUTT STUCK OUT TOWARD THE BACK OF THE CHAIR,
Now, while doing all these things mentioned above,
Lean your upper body forward and feel the stretch in your hamstring.
7. You can hold the stretch for a few seconds, then take a few seconds break, then engage the stretch again. I'd recommend doing 5 to 6 repetitions on your hamstring, and then switch to the other side. You can do as many sets as you'd like of these. You might want to do longer reps, or not so many, and that's fine. It's the doing of them that is important!
8. Do this stretch regularly. Once a day, or many times a day if you can, and you'll notice those hamstrings loosening over time.
You can do it!