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How To Do A High Side Lunge With Perfect Form

Published January 12, 2018
KC Clements

Written By: KC Clements, MS

KC holds a Master of Arts in Gender Politics from New York University

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<script type="application/ld+json"> { "@context":"http://schema.org", "@type":"BlogPosting", "author": { "@type": "Person", "name": "KC Clements, MS" }, "publisher": { "@type": "Organization", "name": "Warrior Made", "logo": { "@type": "ImageObject", "url": "https://www.warriormade.com", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2019/11/Intermediate_HIGH_SIDE_LUNGE.jpg" } }, "headline":"How To Do A High Side Lunge With Perfect Form", "datePublished":"2018-01-12", "dateModified": "2019-10-30", "description":"Learn How To Do A High Side Lunge With Perfect Form.", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2019/11/Intermediate_HIGH_SIDE_LUNGE.jpg" } </script> <article> <div> <ul> <li><a href="#section1">Instructions</a></li> <li><a href="#section2">Things to Keep in Mind</a></li> <li><a href="#section3">Conclusion</a></li> </ul> </div> <section> <p>If you’re trying to improve your leg strength and gain better balance, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better exercise than lunges. But did you know that lunges come in many variations that zero in on different muscle groups? Here we’re going to teach you an intermediate variation on the lunge that will target your glutes and outer thighs in one swift sideways movement: the <i>high side lunge</i>.</p> <p>To perform the high side lunge, start in a comfortable wide stance. Bend your right knee and hinge at the hips to lower yourself toward the ground. Meanwhile, straighten your right leg fully, giving your thigh a strong squeeze as you do so. When you’ve dropped as far as you can comfortably, press through the right heel to come back to standing. Perform the same move on the opposite side. Continue to alternate until you’ve hit the desired number of repetitions. The high side lunge is ideal for strengthening your lower body <i>and</i> dramatically improving your flexibility.</p> <p>Beginners should start out with <i>sumo squats</i> before moving on to more challenging exercises. Stand with your feet together then rotate your left leg at the hip to step to the side. Place your foot on the ground once you’re in a wide stance then drop into a partial squat. Now drag your right leg towards your left leg to return to standing. Begin the next repetition by stepping out your right leg and performing the movement exactly the same. If you’re struggling to keep your balance, try placing your hands on your thighs as you do this move. Over time, you’ll build up strength and stability.</p> <p>Once you’ve mastered the high side lunge, transition to the <i>low side lunge</i>. This move is almost identical to the high side lunge, but you’ll drop down lower to the ground and stay there as you perform your lunges from side to side. One of the best features of this progression is that you can start out with the high side lunge and push yourself to go a little lower each time. Eventually you’ll find yourself doing low side lunges with ease. </p> <p>Now, let’s get started by learning how to do the high side lunge with perfect form!</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section1"> <h2>Instructions</h2> <ol> <li>Stand up then place your feet in a wide stance with your toes pointed outward at around a 45 degree angle. Only go as far as you can comfortably.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-1.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-1.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-1.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-LR-1.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="high-side-lunge-1"> </picture> <li>Hinge at the hips and bend your right knee to lower yourself towards the ground. Allow your left leg to fully straighten out as you do this.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-2.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-2.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-2.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-LR-2.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="high-side-lunge-2"> </picture> <li>Press through your right heel to bring yourself back up to standing. </li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-3.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-3.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-3.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-LR-3.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="high-side-lunge-3"> </picture> <li>Repeat the movement, this time bending your left knee and straightening your right leg. Continue to alternate until you’ve finished a set.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-4.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-4.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-4.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-LR-4.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="high-side-lunge-4"> </picture> </ol> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section2"> <h2>Things to keep in mind</h2> <ul> <li>When you drop to the right, make sure that your right knee tracks directly over your toes and vice versa. As you look down at your leg, you should see that your femur—the large thigh bone—points in the same direction as your toes. This protects your knee joint.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-5.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-5.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-5.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/high-side-lunge-LR-5.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="high-side-lunge-5"> </picture> <li>Be sure to keep around 70 percent of the weight on your bent knee in your heels and 30 percent on the balls of your feet. Don’t let your foot lift off the ground as you lunge. Instead keep your heel firmly planted on the ground.</li> <li>For the straight leg, squeeze your quad hard and point the toes upward towards the ceiling to really activate those leg muscles.</li> <li>Inhale as you drop down then use a strong exhale to press yourself back up to standing. Feel free to place your hands on the ground to stabilize yourself as you adjust to this move. Over time you should be able to do the high side lunge with your hands out in front of you.</li> </ul> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section3"> <h2>Conclusion:</h2> <p>The high side lunge is an incredible move for building your leg strength, improving flexibility, and boosting your balance and stability. Form is much more important than speed here, so take each repetition one at a time and be sure to squeeze your quads and glutes hard. It’s also important not to push yourself harder than is comfortable. Set yourself up in a solid pose from the start and only lunge as deeply as you can without feeling pain. With time, you should be able to drop yourself down lower and lower until you’re ready to take on the low side lunge.</p> <p>Again, this move is more challenging than it appears. Beginners should try the Sumo squat to start getting accustomed to the movement while building up their lower body strength. This series of exercises gives you a unique opportunity to push yourself a little further—and a little harder—each time until you’re performing those low side lunges with ease. Plus, any of these moves will give you an incredible lower body workout.</p> <p>You’ve got all the cues you need to perform the perfect high side lunge, so why not try it out? Add a set to your next workout or do a few repetitions in the morning right when you roll out of bed.</p> <p>If this exercise is too easy, try <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/exercise/perfect-form-low-side-lunge/">Low Side Lunges</a>. If this exercise is too difficult, try <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/exercise/perfect-form-sumo-squats/">Sumo Squats</a>.</p> </section> </article>

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