Improving movement and building strength is the best thing you can do to limit imact on your knee and solve chronic knee pain and arthritis. With that being said, choosing exercises that are safe and effective for those with knee pain is important to avoid making your knee pain worse. The reverse lunge is an important exercise for solving knee pain. In this article we’ll look at five of the most important benefits of the reverse lunge for solving knee pain and keeping active.
1. Less Impact Than The Forward Lunge
One of the main benefits of the reverse lunge in comparison to the forward lunge is that significantly less impact goes through the knee with the reverse variation. Stepping backwards keeps your front leg (the leg doing the work) at close to a 90 degree angle for less force on the knee. This will help you avoid aggravating knee pain while strengthening your leg.
2. Targets The Glutes And Hamstrings
Building strong glutes and hamstrings should be priority #1 for anyone with knee pain and arthritis. The amount of impact that happens at the knee is controlled by these two muscle groups. The first benefit of the reverse lunge is that it specifically strengthens the glute and hamstring muscles.
Strong glutes (or hip muscles) help you control movement of your knee for less impact and pain at the joint.
3. Improves Side To Side Imbalance
One of the most common causes of knee pain and arthritis are strength imbalanes between your right and left leg. This occurs naturally (by having a dominant leg) but can be made much worse through minor and major injuries to one leg (rolling ankles, knee surgery, etc). Overtime this contributes to knee pain and arthritis.
One of the biggest benefits of the reverse lunge is improving these side-to-side imbalances. The reverse lunge is a single leg exercise. This forces your weaker leg to work just as hard as your stronger leg…improving these imbalances for less impact at your knee.
Strength imbalances between your right and left leg lead to more impact at the knee
4. Improves Balance And Control
An ability to balance on a single leg has been shown to be a good predictor of overall health. Having control of your single leg movements (walking, running, going up stairs) also helps you avoid injuries to the knee. Another benefit of the reverse lunge is it allows you to improve balance and control while on a single leg.
5. It Is A Functional Exercise
A functional exercise is one that translates to real world activities. Not only do you want your exercise routine to limit impact on your knee, you want it to help you perform your favorite activities. The reverse lunge targets the same muscles and movements needed to walk, go for a hike, go up stairs, etc. Which is why one of the main benefits of the reverse lunge is it’s ability to help you keep active and maintain your lifestyle as you get older.
The reverse lunge is a functional exercises that helps you perform many important activities
The benefits of the reverse lunge in solving knee pain are endless. Strengthening your glutes, improving, imbalances, and training real-world activities will help you keep active and maintain your lifestyle as you get older.
For the last 10 years I’ve been helping adults build the strength and confidence to live active, healthy, and happy lives. My free program ‘Solving Pain With Strength’ gives you a step-by-step, approachable way to build strength without stressing your joints. Download it below and get started feeling better today.