Lunges – Common Mistakes And Correct Technique

The lunge is one of the most common exercises.

Being able to lunge means you have strong stability muscles, glutes, quads, core muscles, and so on.

People practice lunges for different reasons, some for rehabilitation, recovering from injuries while others want to have a toned butt.

When working with a physio for example, they ensure the technique is impeccable.

When we do it in the gym, with weights, and only for the purpose of fitness and toning up so we look good, technique is forgotten or ignored, or not even known. We just lunge around without even thinking about what we are doing. We just know the lunges are good for glutes and burns calories so it’s good enough. Or is it?

But it’s not your fault. Probably no one spent the time showing you how to actually do it.

Straight to the point, many people who lunge don’t know how to lunge.

 

Common mistakes in lunges

  • lunge is too short or too long
  • feet are on the same line (less stability)
  • front knee collapses in
  • front knee is shaky
  • front foot is unstable on the ground
  • leaning forward or back
  • jerky movements (particularly when stepping back but not only)
  • back knee is too low and the leg doesn’t have the necessary strength
  • body weight is wrongly distributed
  • aggressively pushing against the ground (particularly when stepping back)
  • stepping heel first
  • front heel coming off the ground
  • knees going over the toes
  • poor posture

Do you do any of these mistakes?

 

Consequences of incorrect lunges

  • knee pain (very common)
  • ankle pain
  • foot pain
  • back pain
  • shoulder pain
  • promoting poor posture
  • not training the right muscles, and straining others

 

Solutions for lunges mistakes

I don’t yet have a video with lunges technique, yet. So I will give you just a few technical point to focus on at your next training session.

  1. Have space between your legs to help with balance (you can place them on the same line later)
  2. The length of the lung is about 2x hip width (if while lunging your front heel comes off the ground the lunge is too short; if you have to lean forward to step the lunge is too long)
  3. Front foot is always on the ground, with the whole foot rooted on the floor (read about The Tripod here)
  4. Keep your body straight at all times – no leaning forward or back when you stand or step
  5. Front knee stays behind the toes

 

If you are having trouble with these elements then you need to do something before: lunge with the back heel on the ground. We need to strengthen stability muscles before doing a lunge with back heel off the ground in the correct way. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Have space between your legs to help with balance (you can place them on the same line later)
  2. The length of the lung is about 2x hip width (if while lunging your front heel comes off the ground the lunge is too short; if you have to lean forward to step the lunge is too long)
  3. Front foot is always on the ground, with the whole foot rooted on the floor (read about The Tripod here)
  4. Front knee stays behind the toes
  5. Place the back heel on the ground
  6. Bring the back foot right next to the front foot – keep knee bent, keep height the same and both heels on the ground
  7. Bring the back foot back and repeat

See picture attached to this article.

When the lunge with back heel on the ground becomes easy you can start the walking lunges. Alternatively you can hold onto something to perform the exercise and as you get stronger you can do it without holding.

 

I promise a video to attach to this article.

In the mean time if you are unsure about the technique contact me, there is no charge at all, we get on a call and I help you get these lunges done properly. Contact me here.

 

alexandramerisoiu

Alexandra Merisoiu, The Body Engineer, is the Founder of The Merisoiu Technique – Institute Of Health And Human Movement and Dracula’s Retreat. She is also a qualified Low Back Pain Management and Prevention Exercise Instructor and REPS registered.


She specialises in working with runners, beginners and advanced, who want to run faster, further, with less effort and fewer injuries. This is done through natural movement fitness and running technique and mechanics drawn from the many disciplines Alexandra has studies throughout the years, including long distance running.


Since 1995 she has explored how the body and mind works. She has done this through using many different sporting techniques and working with a wide variety of highly respected coaches. Throughout her Martial Arts career she has achieved 3rd Dan Black Belt in Karate Shotokan, runs her own Karate club and is IJKA 2017 triple World Champion, 2016 WMO Martial Arts British National and European Champion. She still competes at an international level.


It is through these learnings, and drawing inspiration from respected natural movement names such as MovNat, IdoPortal and POSE Method of running among many others, that she has created The Merisoiu Technique and has established her own unique transformational programs that incorporate thousands of years of knowledge with Natural Human Movement.


Alexandra’s mission is to challenge the status quo of how to achieve the truly strong, fit and powerful body a runner needs to perform at their best level. This is done through building strong, lasting foundations in the natural outdoor environment; reducing the risk of injuries and educating people on the power of the fundamentals of natural human movement and running mechanics.


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