Lacrosse Training: Reducing Hamstring Injuries

Hamstring Injury

-February 29th, 2012-

There are 2 types of injuries in lacrosse: contact injuries (which are a result of a check or collision) and non-contact injuries (like a muscle pull or sprained ankle).

There is no injury in lacrosse that is 100% preventable, but you can reduce the risk of injury based on your training.

Contact injuries are much harder to prevent, but non-contact injuries should rarely occur if you have a good training program as these injuries are more predictable.

One of the most common non-contact injuries in lacrosse (or any running sport) is a hamstring injury.

The #1 cause of hamstring injuries is muscle weakness (lack of flexibility is #2). And in most cases the weak muscle that causes the injury isn’t the hamstring, it’s the glutes (and sometimes its just the glutes aren’t activated, not that they aren’t strong enough).

Your hamstrings perform 2 functions: to flex the knee (like in a buttkicker or leg curl) and assist the glutes in extending the hip (drive your hips forward, like in a deadlift). Both of these functions occur every single stride while running.

However, your glutes are the prime hip extensors so if they are weak it places more stress on your hamstrings to extend the hips. It’s this increased demand on your hamstrings to do your glutes job that causes the hamstring injury.

So the key to reducing the likelihood of hamstring injuries is to actually strengthen and activate your glutes, and train your hamstrings to perform both functions (hip extension and knee flexion), as well as increasing your flexibility.

Here are just a few things you can do to help broken down into 3 categories: Flexibility, Glute Activation, and Strength.

The Flexibilty and Activation stuff can be done pre-game or practice, the strength stuff in the gym.

Give these a try, and you’ll be much more likely to be on the field playing instead of watching on the sidelines.


Hamstring Stretch


Spiderman Crawl

Toe Touches (don’t just stand up, actively flex your glute to make that muscle extend the hips)

Glute Activation

Cook Hip Lift

Quadruped Hip Ext. Rot.

Yoga Table (especially if you want it to get sexy)


DB Single Leg Deadlift

SB Leg Curl

Single Leg Shoulder Elevated Hip Lift

P.S. A good strength program not only includes strength exercises, but will also include some activation and flexibility exercises combined to act as your ‘rest’ periods to maximize time and keep you as healthy as possible. Enter your email on the right and see how they are combined in NLL MVP Dan Dawson’s strength program.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave A Reply (No comments so far)

No comments yet




Social Widgets powered by