The Lunge is one of the most fundamental moves in the book. The beauty behind its ability to transform your legs, is the many adaptations and variations that can be applied as you get more advanced. My 12 week strength programme utilises a number of different lunges at different stages to ensure adaptations and progression takes place.
Below are three of my favourite lunge exercises and their levels, all of which can be adapted by adding weight and changing tempo
Weight: Bodyweight or with dumbells
Alternating lunges are a good way to start your lunging lifetime. A single-leg strength exercises that targets the quads, hips, hamstrings and core.
Stand in an upright position, feet shoulder width apart
Chest back, eyeline forewords.
Step forwards with one leg lowering your rear knee toward the ground whilst keeping your toe and knee in line
Push off the front leg and return to starting position.
ALTERNATING WALKING LUNGES
Main muscle worked : Quads
Begin standing with your feet shoulder width apart
Step forward with leading leg, felcing the knee to drop hips.
Lower until your rear knee nearly touches the gorund at a 90degree angle
Drive through the heel of your lead foot and extend both knees to raise back up to upright position.
Step forward with rear leg and repeat.
REVERSE LUNGE FROM A DEFICIT
The deficit here works perfectly to emphasize the glutes and hamstrings. Lunging backward off the platform puts excess force on the hip extensors.
Muscles Worked: Quads, Glutes, Hamstrings
Begin with both feet on a step platform about hip-width apart and dumbbells in hand.
Step back with your right foot and lower yourself down so that your right knee almost touches the ground.
Come up out of the lunge and return to starting position with both feet on platform. This completes one rep.
BULGARIAN SPLIT SQUAT
This is one of my favourite exercises. If performed correctly, this exercise has the ability to create loads of tension through the quads and glutes and leave you feeling on FIRE.
Use a bench to elevate the rear leg, toe facing down, ankle in a neutral position
Hold dumbells in either arm and squeeze tightly towards the side of body
Lower under control and achieve as deep a flexed hip postion as possible without rounding your spine. Drive UP back to starting position.
This exercise is one hell of a balance challenge, even when performed without weights. If your goal is muscular size and strength, you cannot rely on just bodyweight – you must work up towards loading with a weight. With strength and correct technique, balance will come naturally.