A few exercises always come to mind when working your glutes: squats and lunges. They are two of the most popular, and for a good reason – they're both incredibly effective at building strong glutes. But if you want to add some changes to your routine, try incorporating a curtsy lunge into your workout. This move is a great way to target your glutes differently and can help you build strength and muscle definition. Ready to give it a try? Check out the steps below!
What is a Curtsy Lunge?
A curtsy lunge is a workout move that helps tone the legs and butt. It is similar to a regular lunge, but you step back and diagonally into a low curtsy instead of stepping forward or backward.
You'll work your quads, hamstrings, and glutes with curtsy lunges. As you lower into the lunge, keep your core engaged so you don't round your back. Try doing a curtsy lunge with a jump to add even more of a challenge. This will work your calf muscles as well as your quads and glutes. Remember to land softly to avoid injury.
Curtsy lunges are a great way to make your workout routine fun and engaging by adding variety to your workouts and challenging your muscles in an unusual way. Give them a try today!
How Do You Do a Curtsy Lunge?
- Start by standing with your feet approximately hip-width apart and your hands on your hips.
- Then, with your right leg take a large step backward and diagonally to your left, bending your knee to form a 90-degree angle sinking into a lunge.
- Keep your chest straight, proud, and your shoulders back as you lower into the lunge.
- Finally, push off with your right leg and return to standing.
- Repeat the movement, this time stepping backward and diagonally with your left leg.
- Continue alternating sides for a total of 8-10 repetitions.
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Benefits of the Curtsy Lunge
While we have already mentioned that curtsy lunges work legs and posterior chain, here are some additional, very important benefits of this exercise:
Strength & Muscle Mass
The curtsy lunge not only strengthens your body but also helps add more lean muscle mass. The lunge is a great compound movement that works for multiple muscle groups, joints, and stabilizers all at once — helping you build strength and size in your lower body & core.
Adding the curtsy lunge to your routine can help improve functional movement and performance for other lifts and training activities.
The curtsy lunge strengthens the muscles in your buttocks, namely the gluteus maximus, medius, and inner thighs. Regularly incorporating the curtsy lunge into your leg workout routine can result in bigger, fuller, stronger glutes.
Additionally, with stronger glutes, you'll be able to push more weight when lifting and increase raw power and strength overall.
The curtsy lunge is great for resistance and strength training. The thermic effect of exercise helps you burn more calories, but the best way to increase thermogenesis is with resistance training.
Strength training builds muscle mass, simultaneously boosting your metabolism and leading to accelerated calorie burn even at rest. So the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn—up to 6 kcal/lb per day!
Your metabolism doesn't return to baseline immediately after you finish working out. The process, called excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), can result in your body burning more calories even at rest.
EPOC occurs while your body is repairing muscle tissue during the recovery phase and contributes to the number of calories you burn daily. Workouts that are longer with heavier resistance training weights have been shown to produce a greater EPOC effect.
Can You Add Weight to Curtsy Lunges?
The Curtsy Lunge is an amazing way to tone your legs, but can you add weight to it?
Adding weight to any lunge will make it more challenging, and the Curtsy Lunge is no different. If you have dumbbells or a kettlebell, you can hold them in your hands as you perform the exercise.
You can also put on a weighted vest to increase the difficulty. Just be careful not to overload yourself – start light and increase the weight gradually as you get stronger. With a little extra resistance, you'll be able to take your Curtsy Lunge to the next level.
Related Article: 10 Kettlebell Exercises That Will Tone Your Entire Body
1. Why can curtsy lunges hurt your knees?
While there are many ways to do a lunge, such as the "curtsy lunge" that's all over fitness magazines, this method is not ideal for someone with existing knee issues or general joint pain issues because when you cross your back leg behind you during the lunge, it puts pressure on the knee from forces shoving lateral (to the side).
2. How many curtsy lunges should I do?
For the curtsy lunge, begin with 2–3 sets of 8–12 repetitions on each side. Depending on your technique, choose your set and repetition amount.
3. Which lunges are easiest on the knees?
Static lunges are ideal because you can more effortlessly maintain the right form than traditional lunges. In classic lunges, the bad technique commonly leads to knee pain.
However, static lunges work major quads and hamstrings muscles as well as glutes, calves, and hips/knees stabilizing muscles.
4. Why do I struggle to do lunges?
People have trouble with lunges mostly because they don't have a wide enough stance. If you keep your legs about as far apart as your hips or wider, lunges can feel much easier.
The Curtsy Lunge is a great way to build your glutes and can be easily added to any routine. This move targets the gluteus medius, maximus, and minimus, as well as the hamstrings — all key muscles for a strong lower body. Because it is a unilateral move (working each leg independently), it can help reduce imbalances and improve overall mobility.
And because you can add weight, it's also a great way to increase strength and power. So give it a try next time you're looking to mix things up or want to focus on building a better booty!