Exercise of the Week: Barbell Lunge

7 11 2010

I’m feeling pretty restless and pent up today as I went to the gym for my weekly weights session and the doors were broken so I couldn’t go in! Madness.

I’m tempted to go for a run instead but I’ll see how I’m feeling after this post! So I’m going to put up an exercise that I would have done had the doors been open.

This exercise is called the barbell lunge. If you play any kind of sport that involves a burst of speed (football, rugby, basketball, tennis) this is an excellent exercise to work into your routine. Performed correctly, it’s a concentrated workout on the hamstrings and glutes and after a couple of weeks, you’ll really notice that burst of explosive power.

Form: Using a weight you are comfortable with, position the bar on your shoulders (between your traps and rear delts). With your feet a shoulder width apart, in a controlled movement which entails a straight back and tight abs, lunge your right foot forward. Focus on feeling the tension in the lunging leg until your opposite thigh is nearly parallel to the floor (see bottom image). Back up the lunging leg until you are back in the standing position.

When lunging you should be thinking about where you are placing your lunging foot as that will determine whether you are providing a stable stance to shoulder the weight. I wouldn’t use a weight as large as the image unless I am being spotted but it’s your preference. If you are bulking up, do 3 sets of 4-5 reps of 80-90% of your maximum lift. For strength and conditioning 8-10 reps of 60-70% of your maximum.

Try it for twice a week for a couple of months and you’ll notice you’ve got that extra yard of pace when you need it.

D.

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