Author: Scott Smith
Why it made the list (Why you should do them):
In order to make my top 10 list, an exercise needs to work multiple-muscle groups at once. The lunge is no exception.
When executed with proper technique, this lower body move works the hamstrings, glutes, and quadriceps. These three groups are all significant in size, which means higher calorie expenditure and higher intensity levels can both be achieved.
In addition to all that, a high level of core stabilization is needed in order to maintain proper hip position and upper body posture, making the lunge even more valuable to your leg workout regimen.
How to do them properly:
– Standing with your feet set hip width apart, place your hands on your hips (or hold a pair of dumb bells at your side) and draw your shoulders down and back.
– Draw-in your lower abdominals (as if preparing for someone about to punch you in the stomach) and step forward with one leg, and slowly lower yourself through the heel of that lead front foot and ball of the back foot till your trail knee is about 1-2 inches from the floor.
– While lowering your body, keep your weight back and stay tall. The angle of both knees should be approximately 90 degrees at the bottom. Your back hip should be extended (do not stick your butt back on this one).
– Drive backwards off your lead leg into the starting position and repeat on the other leg.
– As a regression, perform box step ups or step back lunges. As a progression increase your weight, elevate the height you are holding your weight, or increase your volume (reps and sets).
I’ve picked these 10 lifts because of their proven efficiency and effectiveness at forcing the body to adapt and change for the better! Some of the variations may be a bit more advanced than you are currently ready to perform, but if you continue to follow this site, I can promise you that regressions will be made available for your learning. But that does not mean you shouldn’t aspire to be able to do these 10 exercises at some point!
If you are/have been a client of mine you no doubtably know some variation of these movements because they are a true staple of my programs. I hope they serve you as well as they have served me!
Scott Smith, CSCS
Just a recap so far… Click on the exercise to watch the video!