account My cart 0
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Why These Lunges Are So Powerful

knee pain

MAX lunges are one of the most well known, but also poorly performed DVRT movements. First, what makes the MAX lunge so great? When we perform lunges we are moving through one plane of motion and having to resist forces that try to throw our body off in other planes. The very nature of lunges having an asymmetrical stance to them gives us these important qualities and makes lunges much more powerful than people ever realize because all they often see if the load being used, that’s a trap for sure!

While so far I haven’t shared anything that makes MAX lunges unique, they do become so when we add the unique movement of the Ultimate Sandbag. That difference comes when the Ultimate Sandbag begins in front of our body and then begins to rotate around. The action of the Ultimate Sandbag moving in such a way starts to amplify the challenge of the body to RESIST rotational and lateral forces at a much higher level. Exactly what these chains of muscles are suppose to be doing in our movement.


This movement is NOT a lunge with this kinda quick twist as Greg Perlaki of DVRT UK shows below.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Greg Perlaki (@greg_perlaki)

The goal is to time the movement of the thoracic spine with the action of the lunges and that is one of many reasons we begin teaching our MAX lunges with a drop step, instead of forward lunge. Going backwards means we have less of our body to decelerate and you are moving with the weight at some level on the way down. This means doing MAX lunges any other direction is going to a method we use to increase the intensity.

Of course, what is also important to realize is that we want a little movement of our thoracic spine, we aren’t trying to be like the Exorcist! We do NOT want to try to rotate our body as much as possible, we just want enough rotation to make the weight pass our body, or if we hold in the front loaded position just about 20 degrees. Why 20 degrees? Because no one knows how much that actually is but it doesn’t sound like a lot so people tend to over rotate less;)

MOST important though is that people have their foundational lunges down. That means they have worked through many of our Up Down progressions…

You will want to work on Split Squats…

Why do we use the Ultimate Sandbag for MAX lunges, does it REALLY matter or are we trying to use Jedi mind tricks to just get you to use our USBs? Well, there are a few reasons…

-The neutral grip that is pliable allows us to actively pull the handles apart the helps us keep the lats engaged that gives us more core activation and stability so we don’t over rotate and control our lunges.

-The dimension allows us to change the position to the Front Loaded holding position that helps us build better progression. Holding the Ultimate Sandbag in the Front Load position and having both the weight and the dimension of USBs we can create deliberate tension to help us learn how to properly control our core and lunge.

-The Ultimate Sandbag gives us a freer movement where we can slowly move and get strength and dynamic stability, or we can really swing the USB and get high levels of power and stability at once.

-Even if something crazy happened (I’ve seen crazy, never on a MAX lunge, but in people training for sure) and you hit your knee you wouldn’t be bashing it with something that could really hurt you (don’t underestimate the value of that!)

As owner and coach at J and D Fitness, Douglas Sheppard, explains how we start our MAX lunges to the progressions that physical therapist, Jessica Bento, demonstrates below, there is no reason that we can’t build and find the right MAX lunge for any person. Fitness should fit people, not people trying to be squeezed into a fitness program.

Today is the FINAL day to sign-up for our online 6-week Foot & Knee Mechanics Masterclass HERE and you can save 20% all throughout DVRT (except the masterclass) with code “save20” HERE