Strength Testing With Single Leg Hamstring Bridge Test

assessment Feb 15, 2018

Why Is Hamstring Strength Important?

The hamstrings are a group of muscles comprising the biceps femoris (long and short heads), semitendinosus, and semimembranosus. Together, these assist in various combinations to extend the hip, and flex and rotate the knee.

They are also especially important in walking, running, and participating in many forms of sport and exercise.

Hamstring injuries are the most common non-contact injury throughout soccer, Australian Rules football, rugby union, track and field events, and American football (Maniar, Shield, Williams, Timmins, & Opar, 2016). 

What Does The Research Say?

Freckleton et al 2013 investigated the Single Leg Hamstring Bridge Test as a method for testing hamstring strength as a lack of strength in this area is commonly perceived as one of the greatest risk factors to a hamstring injury.

Research findings include:

  • This study demonstrated a significant deficit in preseason SLHB scores on the right leg of players that subsequently sustained a right-sided hamstring injury. (Freckleton et al 2013).
  • Australian rules football players that went on not to suffer an injury were able to perform approximately 25 complete repetitions. (Freckleton et al 2013)
  • “Training with a specific emphasis on increasing explosive strength of the hip extensors may be a means through which to improve frontal plane hip and knee control during high-risk maneuvers such as changing direction” (Cronin.B et al, 2016). 

How To Perform Single Leg Hip Bridge Testing

The client lies in a supine position with one foot on a box or bench. The client is cued to flex and extend the testing leg from the hip, touching the hips to the floor and touching the opposite knee at the level marked by the assessor to failure.

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