Leg Exercises

How To: Alternating Dumbbell Lunge

Learn how to properly perform this exercise move for a lower body workout.

dumbbell lunge


  • Grasp a pair of dumbbells and stand upright with your eyes focused forward, feet hip-width apart and arms hanging straight down at your sides.
  • In an open space, step forward about 2-4 feet with one leg and bend your knee to lower your hips until your front quad is parallel to the floor and your back knee is a few inches off the floor.
  • Both knees should be bent roughly 90 degrees at the bottom, and your upper body should be vertical with your abs tight and chest up. Your front knee should not travel past your toes.
  • Pause briefly in the bottom position, then press through the heel of your front foot to extend your hip and knee and return to the start position.
  • At the top, squeeze your quads, hams and glutes for a count before switching sides. Alternate legs for reps.

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  •  Don't lean forward or backward in the bottom position. Concentrate on keeping yourself balanced and centered with your abs tight, chest up and head straight. Focus on pushing through the heel of your front foot rather than your toes to return to the start position. Allowing your back leg to carry too much of the load will decrease the work done by the quad, hamstring and glute of your working leg.
  •  Your front knee should never extend beyond your toes in the bottom position. This produces excessive shearing forces on the knee joint and could cause injury.
  •  Try these while holding a barbell across your traps for an added challenge. If you're going heavy, either be sure you can rack the bar at the end of the set or have a spotter available to assist you.
  •  For increased difficulty, perform all reps on one side before training the opposite leg. As you increase the weight, use straps if necessary.