Tight Hamstrings and Back Pain

What do tight hamstrings have to do with back pain?

A lot! Your back, especially your lumbar spine (lower back), is designed to be fairly stable. The network of muscles in your core (abdominals and pelvic floor) and surrounding your spine are there to support you in an upright position.

We are designed to be on our feet and moving. And that means our hips, where our legs attach to our pelvis/torso, are meant to be flexible and fluid so we can take strides, moving ourselves from one place to another. But what we typically are doing these days is sitting on our butt, not moving. So our hips (where all of the hamstring muscles connect to the pelvis) get really, really tight.

OK, great. But how do tight hamstrings make my back hurt?

Well, if your back was designed to be stable and strong, and your hips were meant to be flexible and fluid, but the exact opposite has happened instead, you're in real trouble! The thumbnail version of how pain occurs is this:

The tightness of your hamstrings causes your pelvis to be pulled down and away from the lumbar spine, which puts the lower back in a position of instability—the exact opposite of what it needs.

So how do I stretch my tight hamstrings?

Ah, that's easy: I have gathered together the Top 10 Best Stretches for Tight Hamstrings and put them into this simple program, available to you for only $4.99. Really, it will teach you how to stretch your tight hamstrings for the best results, and it will start helping you TODAY!

top 10 best stretches for tight hamstrings

Click the image to get started with the 10 Best Stretches for Tight Hamstrings. It's only $4.99!

In addition, for those of you who have back pain along with your tight hamstrings, I devote a huge amount of time and energy to the stretching of the hamstrings and the strengthening of the core and back in the Hauber Method™ videos. Sessions 3 and 4, in particular, contain amazing hip stretches that will give you relief that you have probably never felt before, as well as the most important exercises to help your core and back muscles fight the good fight against tight hamstrings.

If all you've got is tight hamstrings, definitely start right now with my Top 10 Best Stretches for Tight Hamstrings. If you've got back pain, too, and you haven't started with free Session 1 of the Hauber Method™, what on earth are you waiting for? You know you can get back-pain relief for free right now!

Now, why don't you see if you can practice one of my favorite hamstring stretches of all time? It's embedded below. And if this one's too tough for your tight hamstrings, you'll need my Top 10 Stretches, in which I offer several safe and effective alternatives.

Sara Hauber (26 Posts)

Sara Hauber, M.A., has practiced the art of back-care and functional-movement therapy since 1999. She specializes in ending clients' long-term back pain after all other treatments have failed. In 2012 she released The Hauber MethodTM, a 6-week at-home program to relieve chronic low-back pain, featuring the methods that have helped her clients and workshop students live pain-free lives for more than 14 years. You can find her on , Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

3 Responses to “Tight Hamstrings and Back Pain”
  1. Agnieszka Lopez says:

    Sara, Thank you for the clear and detailed explanation of proper alignment while in the stretch. It’s not an easy exercise but I feel I can do it in a way that is more protective of my spine.

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] The Hauber Method (with video example of stretches) […]

  2. […] hamstrings caused by running or other repetitive actions. It works differently from the more common straight-leg hamstring stretches because it helps alleviate the stress on the calves, where the tightness or dysfunction in your […]

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