Another bodyweight exercise for lower body strength training is lunges.

Yesterday, we look at bodyweight squats, which in addition to building lower body strength, are a good practice for improving balance.

Lunges are the same: good for lower body strength and balance. In fact, since there’s a little more movement involved in lunges, they are an even better exercise for balance.

Remember, strength training is not just for the youngsters. It’s just as important — and maybe even more important — for us seasoned citizens, due to something called sarcopenia, which is the technical term for loss of muscle mass.

Things like walking on a treadmill or elliptical machine, stationary bike, things like that are great. But you also needs to work on those muscles.

Like I’ve said before, one way to defend against that natural loss of muscle mass and strength that comes with the aging process is lifting weights. It’s not something that’s real popular with the older crowd, but it’s extremely effective. If you’re a member of a healthy club or gym, don’t be afraid to go over there and mix it up with the young studs and studlettes doing bench press and shoulder press, dumbbell curls, and triceps extensions.

It can be intimidating at first, but I promise you’ll fit right in.

If you’re still not convinced … you can try bodyweight strength training, and so today we’ll look at lunges, which are great for the lower body.

Stand with your feet a comfortable distance apart; hands on your hips.

Step forward with one foot and bend at the knees, leaving your other foot in place but rising slightly up onto your toes. Stand tall, maintain good posture, and only lower yourself as far down as feels comfortable. Ideally, you want your thigh of your front leg to be parallel to the ground, and your lower leg straight up and down — a 90-degree angle. But you can work up to that. Just lower yourself as far down as you can, and then return to the starting position.

Now, step forward with the other leg. Down, back up and return.

Try 5-6 repetitions for each leg — 10 reps, if you can.

Go slowly and at a smooth, controlled pace. Do two or three sets of 10 repetitions.

As you progress and get stronger, you can hold a light weight in each hand. A pair of light dumbbells, for example, or cans of food, water bottles, old milk jugs filled with water. Get creative!

So now you have two bodyweight exercises for lower body strength in your arsenal.

See yesterday’s blog for bodyweight squats, if you need a review. Tomorrow, we’ll look at an exercise called glute bridges.

You can do it!

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