STATIONARY LUNGE & ROW
What does the low lunge help develop?
It helps your seat! By strengthening muscles surrounding the leg joints; knee, ankle and hip. When the lunge is isolated, meaning the position is stationary and no bending of the knee is taking place, the leg starts to work for balance.
The exercise of the lunge itself helps rebalance the pelvis and hips! If both muscles on either side of your seat are able to hold the stability in the lunge position, for the same amount of time, they will become even as muscles develop. Allow the low body to support with balance from left to right. Muscles are meant to help you in the saddle.
The trick to keep proper alignment in the leg is by pointing the knee forward. Also watch the foot on top of the BOSU Ball! For the knee can easily go too far in front of your toes. Anyone with bad knees should probably consult with their doctor before doing lunges in general, there could be a variation specific for your knee problem.
Why on a BOSU Ball?
Any lunging movement primarily develops strength in the quadriceps and glutes (butt muscles). Doing a lunge on a BOSU Ball allows the leg to develop more stability with just body weight. Our legs carry us around all day and training isolated contraction will greatly increase the balance in a riders seat.
If you’ve never stood on one of the these balls, it can kick you off if you’re not prepared! Isolating a lunge position is very difficult and if you see shaking going on while you’re doing the last couple of reps, that means muscles are adapting to the unstable surface!
A: STEP ONE FOOT ON BOSU
Hold a free weight in the opposite hand from the leg that is placed into the lunge on top of a BOSU Ball.
Drop and bend the back knee close, but not touching, the ground.
Rest the arm that has no weight on top of the forward leg.
Stay into this position while you do the single arm row.
B: HANG THE WEIGHT WITH THE ARM
Start with the arm extended near the top of the BOSU Dome.
Without moving the torso or shoulders, let arm row backwards with elbow near the side of your stomach.
Slowly release the free weight back to the BOSU and repeat.
Do 8-10 reps each arm/leg
Why do the single arm row?
Doing a row with the opposite arm than the leg that is lunging works a horseback rider’s diagonal pair. The right shoulder works with the left hip and together they have to stabilize. This is similar to doing a leg yield or picking up a canter lead.
When one side of the body is solid and doesn’t have a problem with the opposite arm rowing, this is the dominate working diagonal. When the other side is shaking and the core starts moving while the leg is holding the lunge, this is happening in the saddle. That side is weak and doing this exercise will help even the imbalance.
Rowing is done while riding but very quietly between the horse and rider. Soon the rider doesn’t use much movement in the arm but has the strength to sustain a working hand for contact and suppleness with a horse.
STATIONARY LUNGE & ROW