This was a great question I got this week about the unilateral hip lift which is part of my No Gym, No Problem Bodyweight Workout (you can get it by subscribing to blog updates on the right).
Here is the paraphrased question…
Q: Why do my hamstrings get amazingly sore for several days after doing the uni hip lift? I’ve also noticed that my lower back gets more sore than usual on rides for a couple days after doing them as well. My glutes get tender but nothing like my hamstrings – what is the reason for this?
Here was my answer…
A: The excessive soreness is from what is known as “synergistic dominance”. Your hamstrings and glutes are supposed to work together to create the movement and the fact that you are getting extremely sore hamstrings and only tender glutes means that your hamstrings are taking over and working too hard. Your low back soreness is also related to this as it will also try to help if you glutes are not functioning properly.
The key to fixing it is to make sure that you are getting the glutes tight before starting a rep and then squeeze it harder to initiate and drive the rep. I’m sure that you can feel your hamstrings and low back getting tight as you complete each rep and you have to try to get that tension to be targeted in the glutes.
Making the “mind-muscle” connection with the glutes can be tough at first but practice and effort will help a lot in the long run. Great question, hope this helps.