If done CORRECTLY, there isn’t much the lunge cannot accomplish. A properly executed lunge will address the following and more:
- Ankle mobility
- Knee alignment
- quad strength
- Iliopsoas issues
- Glute/hip strength/mobility
- core/postural strength
- general conditioning
- and more
I remember during high school gym, Coach Moser made us ‘lunge’ across the entire court and back. It was awful, just brutal, no fun at all type stuff, and probably the best thing I did for my body all month. Even though our form went to crap after ten lunges, this sinister movement was lodged in the back of my mind. SO… while lunges have made a resurgence recently with the rise of functionality over isolated movements if you are not doing some form of lunges in your training do so ASAP.
I like to throw in some type of lunge variation in both my warm-up and cool down a couple times/week and once in awhile throw in the below exercise into my main block of conditioning. The following exercise will stress the entire core/upper body/coordination more than just your average bodyweight lunges.
Backward Contralateral Kettlebell In-line Lunge (the movement is much simpler than the name suggests)
Stand tall with your shoulders square, core tight, and a neutral spine with a kettlebell in left hand (the kettlebell will be on the contralateral/opposite side of front leg).
Step back with left leg so the left foot is in-line with the front right foot (stresses balance/coordination). The left knee should just brush the floor, but don’t rest it there. The torso should remain tall with the chest open and shoulders back. The right knee should not extend further than the toes. Step back to starting position and finish reps then switch sides.
You can play around with the set/rep and weight scheme for your desired goals. There are many, many different forms of lunge exercises you can do so remember that form is always a priority, but just get out there and DO IT. In the office, I use this exercise for many of my patients with a variety of complaints because it engages the entire body and there are many gentle progressions with it. If you have any questions, call our office at 303-300-0424.
Today’s workout will be as simple as it gets. Simple but not easy. I am looking to jump in a kettlebell sport meet soon so I want to play with a timed set today. 20 minutes of long cycle (clean & jerk) with a 24kg bell. I am making it easier by allowing multiple hand switches, but goal is to limit the hand switches and NOT set it down. Will post tommorrow on how it goes. This will be proceeded and followed by a proper warm-up and cool down.