Posted by: Guy Dufour
Saturday, December 29, 2018
Before starting an exercise program, I always performed a fitness consultation and assessment with my prospective client, no matter their age or fitness level. If you have not lived an active lifestyle, the odds are that you have some form of Sarcopenia, a condition of age-associated muscle degeneration that is more common in people over the age of 50. Since I specialize in working with clients 50 plus, it’s a condition I see regularly.
Squats and Lunges are great exercises for the lower body. If strength is the limiting factor when you want to perform lunges, I have a few techniques that will permit you to work around this restriction while performing the exercise safely.
Please view the video for a more detailed explanation and to add a visual component to learning the techniques.
1. Lunges inside the squat rack:
For this variation, use the safety bars inside the squat rack as handles to hold on to. If you do not have access to one, use 2 solid and sturdy items placed on each side of your body. In your home, this can be a kitchen table and the couch. Be careful if using a chair as it can easily tip over. Once you are positioned, start with your feet shoulder width apart, take a big step back to position yourself in a lunge position, grab the safety bars and lower yourself slowly. Notice in the video the recommendation of using a pad for your knee. It is important to use a full range of motion as long as you don’t have pain. You want to strengthenyour legs as much as possible and in their entire range of motion.
2. Lunges Using Cable Overhead:
This variation will require you to have access to a cable machine. Set the handles at a height that is comfortable for you and stand right under them. Again, using a pad for your knee is a good idea. Start with a shoulder width stance and take a big step back. Holding the handles overhead, lower yourself until your knee touches the pad and then use the muscles of your legs (mostly the leg in front) to lift yourself back to your starting position.
Pick one of the variations per workout and as you get stronger, reduce the amount of assistance. You’ll be surprise how quickly your legs will get stronger and before you know it, you will be doing lunges with your bodyweight.
If you are not accustomed to working out, please start very slowly. This means starting with 3 to 5 repetitions per side and do each side for only 1 or 2 sets. See how you feel the next day and adjust accordingly.
Also, I would recommend training legs twice per week. If you need any assistance on how to program for leg training, please send me an email. I’ll be happy to assist you.