The Benefits of Lunges

The Benefits of Lunges

Lunges develop strength in a similar way to squats but take a lot of the load off the lower back.  They help to even out imbalances between glutes and their effects.  Doing them one leg at a time works that way; two at a time not so much - e g squats.  Fewer injuries and better performance is more likely.

Lunges are a truly functional exercise.  They helpfully exaggerate and accentuate walking and striding movement. In doing so, they activate core muscles as well. The accentuated movement loosens hip flexors, which otherwise become tight and less effective.

They stretch your hip flexors, which bend your legs at the hips.  These need stretching especially if you're sitting for long periods, which can lead to back pain. When you do a lunge, you basically force your hip flexors to stretch. As your back knee gets close to the floor, your back's straight and you're leaning slightly forward - that's the stretch.

They naturally improve balance.  If you've never done them, you'll wobble a bit.

Done with a correct, hips-neutral, back straight, slightly lean-forward posture, you'll get your core trained as well. If you're just starting with lunges, begin with the simple, forward lunge and get your posture correct as we just mentioned. (There are many ways to do them, ranging from body weight, or with barbell on shoulders, dumbbells in hand, and on a machine)  

Lunges are great for knees (providing you gradually build the load) and hamstrings (better than squats for the latter)

Rob Riches of the Powertec team talks about how they can be done on a Leverage Squat/Calf machine here: 

FandL Posted by FandL


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