Body Weight Reverse Lunge – Exercise Tutorial
The reverse lunge is one of my favorite single leg exercises. It is much safer for your knees than forward lunges and are more suitable for beginners, adding weight such as a Kettlebell and, they really work into the glutes the deeper you go. Single leg exercise are great to add in to workouts to help correct strength discrepancies in your legs and glutes, which will help improve bilateral exercises in the long run.
Before progressing to the Kettlebell Reverse Lunge I think it is important to first master the basics and do the Body Weight version. It may look easy, but beginners generally have a little difficulty with the co-ordination and balance involved, as this exercise requires you to step backwards (into the unknown, or unseen) and this is scary at first. It compares to when most people start to squat, they tend to lean forward as it’s un-nerving to sit back into thin air. I’m trying not to come across as patronising, but I am just highlighting these issues because I have experienced them myself and, seen countless others struggle with them too. So, if you find you have problems, don’t worry – it’s normal and you will improve as your confidence and strength increase
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, both feet facing forward and parallel to each other.
- Place your hands on your hips, making it easier to pull your shoulder back and down.
- Keep the head and upright, the Core Tight.
- Now with one foot firmly on the ground, step back with the opposite leg until you can no longer see your toes over your forward knee.
- Using the back leg to SUPPORT the movement (for balance), use the forward leg to lower the body down, until the rear knee is about an inch off the ground, and the forward leg is parallel to the ground. If this range of movement is too far, don’t worry, go as far as you can, as long as you maintain the upright position.
- In order to get back to the standing position use the forward leg to push the body weight upwards and pull it forward, using the rear leg only for support. Don’t be tempted to use the rear leg to push you forward, as you will not be using the right muscles for this exercise.
- Squeeze the glutes on the way up and return the rear leg to the starting position.
- Repeat either on the same side, or alternate legs.
- Always keep the body upright and the head looking forwards.
- The forward leg is the leg being worked, the rear leg is there for balance.
- This is a leg and glute exercise, so don’t forget to squeeze your butt.
- If you can only manage a partial lunge, that’s fine, stop at the point where you can still use the forward leg to get back up – don’t compromise the exercise by using the rear leg to help – this is a bad habit developing.
- Imagine the forward leg is doing a squat – it’s the same movement.
- Watch you don’t bang the rear knee on the ground – this hurts!
- If needed, compose your balance before standing again from the lunge – this will help with wobbly knees.
- IF balance is an issue when stepping back, you can place the rear foot slightly out to the side when lunging back, giving you a wider base – but then switch your attention back to the front leg to get you back up
That is the Body Weight Reverse Lunge.