Depicted above is the Side Lunge and Touch, but there are many variations to the Side Lunge exercise. One of mine is the Side Lunge and Dumbbell Press as unlike the example above it moves the body in both a positive and negative direction at the same time and works the whole body.
The lower body moves to the side and downwards while at the same time the upper body moves upwards and the reverse happens in the recovery part of the exercise. As I said, there are many variations of this exercise and to name some of them, there is the Side Lunge and Upright Row; the Side Lunge and Front Raise; the Side Lunge and Lateral Raise…there can be a more dynamic movement in the recovery phase (from the low lunge to the standing position)… You can balance on one leg between lunges…the list can go on!
We tend to stick to certain types of movements and in one plane but we were born to move but lose a lot of natural movement in our modern lifestyle as we sit for long periods of time. It doesn’t matter what age you are, you can start redeveloping natural movements such as all the variations of this exercise by thinking ‘beyond the square’ in the exercises you introduce into your workouts? The easiest medium to do this in resistance workouts is to do circuits.
So a very quick explanation of this exercise: start standing upright and holding a pair of Dumbbells at shoulder height. As you lunge to the side while keeping your body upright, press the Dumbbells overhead to full arm extension. Reverse these movements on the recovery. Try to get as low into the lunge as possible while keeping your body upright (so no leaning forwards or to the side you move in). Repeat the movement moving to the other side. Don’t overdo the lunge as you may strain your muscles of your inner thighs. Keep perfect balance through the whole exercise. Don’t use heavier resistance until you can get as low to the floor as possible.
This exercise and similar movement combinations also stretch the body into a full range of motion and is probably why I enjoy it so much. But don’t stick to just this exercise- be daring and try other combinations?