To Lunge Or Not To Lunge?

Lunges are an extremely diverse exercise as there are so many different variations of lunges that help you target different muscles. Squats and lunges both target your gluteal, quadricep and hamstring muscles but lunges have the benefit of being a single leg exercise which develop your single leg stability more. Lunges require greater stabilisation so will assist in engaging your smaller pelvis stabilising muscles including your gluteus medius and minimus, as well as your core muscles. Depending on your goals and what muscles you wish to target more, different lunge variations can help:

A short forward lunge will target your quadriceps more
A long forward lunge will target your glutes and hamstring muscles more
A side lunge will target your adductor and abductor muscles more

The Benefits of Lunges:

– improve balance and coordination
– they are a more functional exercise which translates into activities such as walking, climbing stairs and running
– they can work on muscular imbalances, improving your weaker side as they target each side individually
– improve hip flexor flexibility – the motion of a lunge forces you to stretch your hip flexors
– improve gluteal activity – commonly inhibited by overactive hip flexors and spinal muscles, however with correct technique with a lunge your body is able to isolate and active the glutes more efficiently
– improve core stability

A list of a few different lunge variations:

– forward lunges (short or long)
– reverse lunges +/- kick
– walking lunges
– side lunges
– diagonal lunges
– curtsey lunges
– lunge with lift
– clock lunges
– jumping lunges
– crossover lunges
– elevated lunges
– weighted lunges (dumbbell/barbell), overhead lunges

As you can see the variations for lunges are endless and it really just depends on what your health, fitness or sport specific goals may be. If you’re looking to get back into exercise and you’ve got any niggling injuries be sure to book an appointment at one of our Bend + Mend clinics for an assessment today. We have locations in Martin Place, Barangaroo – King Street Wharf and Darling Park.

 

 

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