Curtsy Lunge (How To & Alternatives)


Curtsy Lunge

The Curtsy Lunge is a lunge variation that I like to incorporate into warm-ups because it demands a bit more flexibility in the hips than other lunge variations.

In this guide, I’m going to teach you how to properly perform Curtsy Lunges as well as give you a few alternatives you can try.


How To Do Curtsy Lunges


Equipment Needed

  • None

Step-by-Step Instructions

  • Start in a standing position, feet roughly hip-width apart.
  • With your right foot, step back behind yourself – placing your foot at roughly 7 to 8 o’clock.
  • Take a big enough step to allow yourself room to be able to bend into the lunge (but don’t overextend)
  • Try to keep your shoulders square (do not rotate open) and keep the front knee tracking over top of the front foot.
  • Drop the back knee down to just above the ground and then drive yourself back to the starting position with the left leg.
  • Alternate sides until all reps are completed.

Coaching Points

The biggest mistake I see made with Curtsy Lunges is letting the front knee drift outside the foot. Try to keep the front knee in line with the foot throughout the lunge.

Focus on keeping the upper body as square as possible.

If you’re struggling with getting comfortable doing Curtsy Lunges, don’t stress! I would recommend just switching out to one of the alternative exercises below.


Muscles Worked


Curtsy Lunges will work the quads and hamstrings, but they are primarily done to focus on the Glutes – even more specifically the Glute Med.


Curtsy Lunge Alternatives


If you’re struggling with getting comfortable doing Curtsy Lunges (or want to add some resistance) here are a couple of alternatives.

Lateral Lunge

Lateral Lunges

Lateral Lunges are a simple, yet effective warm-up exercise that focuses on the glutes, quads and groin.

Take a large lateral step out to one side, push the hips back, keep the chest up and bend the knee until the thigh is roughly parallel to the ground.

Dumbbell Lunges

DB Lunges

If you’d like to add a little resistance to your lunges you can grab some dumbbells and do Dumbbell Lunges. Instead of stepping behind yourself, step forward, drop the back knee down to just off the ground and then drive yourself back to the starting position.

Keep the chest up tall and the front knee over top of the shoelaces.


More Links and Info


If you’d like to see more warm-up exercises make sure to head over to the Warm-Up Section in the Exercise Library.

Ryan Horton

Horton Barbell was created by Ryan Horton who has served as a Sports Performance Coach for almost 20 years. My mission is to create a training resource to help as many coaches and athletes as possible maximize athletic potential.

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