4 Reasons to Try Deep Deficit Reverse Lunges

I’m a huge fan of single arm and single leg exercises.  I don’t think they get enough emphasis in most programs I see.  If we only do double leg...

I’m a huge fan of single arm and single leg exercises.  I don’t think they get enough emphasis in most programs I see.  If we only do double leg compound movements (squats, deadlifts, olympic lifts) we never test the leg one at a time.  It’s easy to develop asymmetries in strength and mobility and not know about them.  Here’s one of my favorite movements lately and here are the reasons why:

  1. Single leg movements help to identify and correct deficits in strength and mobility from leg to leg
  2. Deficit lunges get the hip past parallel and provide a similar stimulus to the knee as seen in pistols and deep loaded squats.  This can serve to prepare the knee and hip for the stress of higher volume squatting and pistol work
  3. Deficit lunges generally can’t be loaded as much as normal reverse lunges.  They are a great exercise for people that struggle with painful spines because they don’t apply the same compressive and sheer forces that a deadlift or squat will but will work the legs tremendously.
  4. These lunges have a huge range of motion and will increase time under tension of a muscle.  These factors make this an excellent hypertrophy exercise for the lower body.  They definitely make you sore, I can tell you that!

4 Reasons to Try Deep Deficit Reverse Lunges: 1: They are a unilateral movement, building symmetry between legs 2: They bring the hip below parallel giving extra carry over and joint prep work for deep squatting movements and pistols 3: Decreased spinal load – These generally can't be loaded as much as other lunge variations and therefore unload the spine from as much compressive force (Just make sure the box isn't too high to maintain optimal spinal mechanics) 4) Hypertrophy – The huge range of motion on this exercise will increase time under tension and help build some muscle mass on those legs I would start with a smaller box and work your way up as you can control the motion well. I'm using a barbell but a kettlebell front rack position may be a bit safer to start with. Give them a try and let me know what you think! @powermonkeyfitness @jasonleydon @jsshane @modernmanualtherapy @barbellrehab @thebarbellphysio @shift_movementscience @themovementfix #twitter #lunges @crossfitverve

A post shared by Daniel Pope (@fitnesspainfree) on

Give these a shot and then get back to me by responding in the comments below.

If you’d like to see how I program exercises such as these into my online training to promote symmetry, performance and health,then click this link.

My Butt is Still Sore,

Dan Pope DPT, OCS CSCS CF L1

 

Categories
Exercise Demonstrationlunge
7 Comments on this post.
  • Kevin
    7 July 2016 at 10:26
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    Would this be a good alternative for someone who has tight hip flexors who can not get into a deep squat, so they can get the glute activated?

    • djpope
      5 August 2016 at 10:26
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      I don’t think so. I also think that most people who have difficulty in a deep squat don’t have tight hip flexors. If you have a tight pinch in the front of the hip at the bottom of a squat I’d go see a physio to get it checked out.

  • Kyle
    7 July 2016 at 10:26
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    Love this post! Definitely a fan of unilateral movements to improve strength and unload the spine. Could you just give a quick example of deficit you commonly identify, either strength or mobility, and how you would correct for them?

  • Kyle
    17 July 2016 at 10:26
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    Big fan of unilateral movements in general but especially the Reverse Lunge. Definitely going to add the Deficit portion into the routine now. Could you give an example of a deficit you may identify with this movement and how you may go about addressing it?

    • djpope
      5 August 2016 at 10:26
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      If I see the low back roundng a lot or a lot of hip hiking on one side, those would be too big issues to correct.

  • Jesse
    30 August 2016 at 10:26
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    How do you feel about a movement like this for someone who has had two hip scopes for FAI.

    • djpope
      21 October 2016 at 10:26
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      It really depends on the individual. If you’re getting some pinching in the bottom of this movement I would take the deficit higher and higher until no symptoms are felt anymore.

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