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Good Morning Exercise: How-to, Common mistakes + FAQ

The good-morning is a good exercise to train the hamstring. The good-morning may not be the first exercise that comes to mind when you start working the hamstrings, but it is an excellent move for extra mass and shapely legs.

Performing a good morning exercise looks quite easy but can be difficult for some. Read on for more information and step-by-step explanations about this exercise.

Which muscles do you train with good morning exercise?

It should come as no surprise that the good morning exercise primarily stimulates your hamstrings. However, like many barbell exercises, the exercises involve more than just one muscle group. In addition to your hamstrings, you also train your lower back while performing the good morning exercise. This is not strange when you see how to perform the exercise.

In addition to your hamstrings and lower back, your glutes are also used. The exercise may not be well known, but it is still loved by many women. This is because you train the hamstrings, buttocks, and lower back in one fell swoop.

In addition, men also benefit from this exercise, because the good morning can contribute to, for example, a stronger squat or deadlift. Curious about how to perform the exercise? Then read on for a step-by-step explanation.

Good morning: performance

If you don't do the good morning exercise correctly, it will almost seem like you're doing a rather strange and awkward squat. This obviously reduces the efficiency of the exercise. In addition, due to the position of the back, also significantly increases the risk of injuries. It is therefore extremely important to perform the good morning exercise correctly. Below you will find an extensive step-by-step plan for a perfect implementation.

  1. Stand in the starting position

    Place the barbell at a comfortable height in a squat rack. Place the barbell on the back of your shoulders and grip it firmly at a little over shoulder width. Lift the barbell off the rack and place your feet shoulder-width apart.

  2. Lower your upper body

    Slowly push your hips back as you lower your torso. Make sure you keep a slight bend in your knees. Do this until you can't push your hips back any further and your torso is parallel to the floor. Provide a slight natural curve in the back.

  3. Raise your upper body

    Return to the starting position by pushing your hips forward and straightening your back. Focus on the hamstrings. The movement is complete when you can no longer push your hips forward and your knees are straight.

  4. Repeat

    Repeat the steps above for the desired number of reps.

Good morning exercise is best performed with a lightweight. There is quite a lot of tension on the lower back and the execution can certainly be quite difficult in the beginning. Therefore, you really need to put your ego aside and just focus on correct execution.

Ultimately, this will yield you much more than if you immediately increase the weight. Do you notice that the exercise becomes too light in the long run? Then you can hang a little more weight on the bar with peace of mind.

A good starting point is to do around 8 to 12 reps for 3 or 4 sets. This is of course not a requirement and if you like to do more or fewer repetitions, this is also possible.

Good Morning Exercise

Most common mistakes

Due to the position of the back, it is extra important that you do not use the wrong execution of the good morning. Read below what the most common mistakes are and how you can prevent them yourself. This way you can be sure that you perform the exercise yourself safely and correctly.

  1. Not pushing
    the hips back The first mistake many people make is not pushing the hips back or not enough. As a result, the hamstrings are hardly activated and all the stress is placed on the lower back. You should feel your hamstrings pulling firmly with each rep. You can also do the exercise in front of a mirror or have someone film it to check your form.
  2. The wrong posture of the back
    Many people keep their back in the wrong position. This may be because the weight may feel a bit uncomfortable when lowering. Keep a slight natural curve in your lower back and keep your back and upper body straight to avoid injury. So make sure you don't get an overly concave or convex back. If necessary, practice the movement first with only the bar or even without weight to master the exercise.
  3. Bending Knees Too Far
    When you bend your knees too far, some of the weight will be shifted from the hamstrings and glutes to the quadriceps. So make sure you bend your knees only slightly, just enough to feel your hamstrings pull. You should also feel this without weight. So try this if it doesn't work with a barbell at first.

Frequently Asked Questions

To complete the explanation of the good morning exercise, end with a section of frequently asked questions. This will clear up any ambiguity you may have about the exercise and you will be fully aware of everything you need to know to perform the exercise safely and efficiently.

Is the good morning safe?

Yes, the good morning exercise is safe to perform, provided you do it right of course. There is quite a bit of strain on the lower back while performing, so it's very important to tighten your back and keep it straight. If it becomes uncomfortable or painful at any time, it is wise to stop taking it to avoid possible injuries.

Is the good morning exercise bad for the back?

No, the good morning is definitely not bad for your back. In fact, correct execution can actually make your lower back stronger. As a result, the exercise can also contribute to strengthening your squat or deadlift, for example. All in all, the good morning is great for strengthening both your hamstrings and your lower back.

Is a good morning suitable for beginners?

We would not label this exercise as a beginner exercise. There should be a degree of mobility and weight control that a beginner is unlikely to have. There will of course be exceptions, but if you are a beginner and you don't have an instructor at your disposal, it becomes quite difficult. An instructor can help you on-site with the performance and in that case, you can do the good morning as a beginner.

Can I do the good morning with elastics?

It is possible to perform the good morning exercise with elastic bands. This is possible in two different ways. First of all, you can hold the elastics with your hands while standing on them. Then make the good morning movement as described in the explanation. However, you will notice that the tension is lowest at the most horizontal point of the back, while with a barbell this is the point where the tension is highest. This makes it almost a different exercise.

The other way to do the good morning with elastics is to stand on the elastic again and then put the elastic around your neck. Here too, however, you will notice that the manner of tension is reversed compared to the exercise with a barbell. Our preference is always for a barbell good morning, but for lack of better, using elastics is always better than nothing.

Would you also like to see other exercises for the hamstrings? Here you will find the complete overview of exercises for the hamstrings

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