Description: Stepping either forward or backwards onto one leg.
Motions trained: Torso flexion, lifting
Main muscles used: Quads, hamstrings
How to do it:
The front lunge: Step forward and drop down
until the front leg is bent at 90 degrees.
Pause briefly, return to the initial position,b
driving through the heel.
The back lunge: Step back until the front leg is at 90 degrees.
Driving through the heel
advance back to the starting position.
As you practice the basic movements you will move either forward or back. To stay in place,
when stepping forward, drive back and when stepping back, drive forward, essentially swapping
the second half of each motion.
How to work up to it:Doulbe-legged pistols are good. Working on pistols using
a pole or doorway is also very good.
Ramping it up: Do them plyometrically, so that just as you get to the
bottom of the motion, you blast back to the standing position. Dumbells work well too.
Do's and don'ts: Do make sure that your toes are pointing in the direction of travel
and that you are staying in line with them to avoid shearing on the knee. Do not let your
knees travel ahead of your big toe as this will give you knee pain.
Comments: These help you stabilize against forward and backwards motions and
as such are not cheating pistols. A lot of conditioning programs put these in their advanced set
of exercises because of the momentum, so if you are a bit wobbly, controlling that aspect
is a good idea.