YES, LUNGES! Said no one ever!!!!
However, we probably should be far more enthusiastic about lunging than we are. Why? If I didn’t tell you the name of the exercise but told you the following facts about it, what would you think…..
-Relies on hip stability and mobility in the hips, lower leg, and foot.
-Builds strength in the often missed frontal plane.
-Teaches us how to use our glutes in a more real world way than on the ground.
-Has been shown to stimulate the same amount of muscle (sometimes even more) with the body weight version than a loaded squat, (1)
-Not only has us move up and down, but gives us more direction with our movement which is far more like real life and sport.
This sounds like a pretty darn impressive resume doesn’t it? So, it is odd that lunges still take such a back seat to more popular drills like squats and deadlifts. Sure, I know some of this is the misleading idea that the heavier the load used in an exercise means it is more valuable. Yet, I think there is something else at play here.
The reality is that most people just flat out stink at doing lunges! That often isn’t their fault as it is not having the right progressions to build up a good lunge. Yes, that’s right, far too often, even as fitness professionals we start people with FAR too difficult of a lunge progression.
Where should we start? Before we even get moving, we have to learn how to start building a strong foundation. This follows our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training concepts of build stability before introducing instability.
That means using the half kneeling position. Why? Most people miss in the lunge three key concepts….
If you can learn all three of these DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training concepts you will be SHOCKED at how much faster and more efficiently you learn the lunge. I know from experience. It was only a bit more than a year ago where I had lost complete use of my right leg.
There was NOTHING there and I had to start at ground zero with these EXACT progressions. If you find yourself doing the same, don’t feel badly about yourself! The reality is all movement training should be a skill we develop, so just realize you are re-learning a really important skill. You will be surprised when you learn these skills that you quickly progress and find out so many more important lessons about real world strength and fitness.
Even a 1000 pound squatter in Darrell Banning knows lunges are key to health & performance!
The lunge is a beautiful exercise, not only that, it is REALLY important! So, start using these DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training drills and get that strong base, coming soon we will be layering progression and getting you to really appreciate movement based strength!
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1. Dwelly, P., Oliver, G. Blair, H., Keeley, D. Hoffman, H, “Improved Muscle Activation in Performing A Body Weight Lunge Compared to the Traditional Back Squat,” University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR, USA Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond, KY, USA