If you are looking for a substitute, you would obviously want to target those same muscles, which all of the exercises below do. Extend one leg back slowly and make sure your knees don’t extend beyond your toes. Perform a walking lunge, keeping your weight on the heel of your forward foot. A good Cossack squat alternative either mimics a similar movement pattern as the Cossack squat or engages similar muscle groups, such as the glute medius or quads. As always, remember to keep your weight in the heel of your front foot. The muscles used in the Cossack squat are: • Quads• Glutes• Hamstrings• Adductor Magnus (Inner Thigh)• Obliques (side abs)• Calves. With an ankle strap attached to your ankle, you will face sideways to the cable machine and lift your leg laterally. Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window). As you step to the side, you will engage your glute medius, which is a primary muscle group in the Cossack squat. Your elbows should go inside of your knees. Lunges Key Pointers: Your legs should be staggered in parallel, and pelvis and spine should be neutral. • Stand tall with one shoulder next to the cable machine• Strap an ankle attachment around the ankle that’s farthest from the cables• Raise the weighted leg out laterally as high as possible• Pause and then reverse the range of motion back to the starting position• Feel free to hold the cable machine for balance with your hand. Lunges aren’t the only way to train your lower body. Remember to keep your hips level and as steady as possible throughout the exercise. Doing a reverse lunge is easier than doing a forward or walking lunge because you maintain more control over your torso and weight placement (your center of gravity doesn’t shift forward with your forward momentum), making it easier maintain proper form, particularly in your front foot. I’m including several sample videos below so you can see the differences. Select between the higher-impact, traditional jumping jack, or the lower-impact step-out version. This works the knee in a way very similar to how lunges do. Modify a low-impact version by stepping out to your left into a jumping jack position, then coming back to center, and repeating it on the right. To do it: Stand with your feet hip-width apart. These are great for both strength and conditioning. Squats and lunges aren’t for everyone, so there’s no need to feel bad if they’re completely off-limits for you, but if you can slowly work your way up to these movements, I highly recommend trying. If you don’t have shoulder pain, this is another good alternative for lower body-focused cardio. Hi! Should You Buy the Echelon Smart Connect? Step your right foot out to the side, sitting your hips back, coming into a lateral (side) lunge. PowerliftingTechnique.com is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. This will force you to not only bring your knee up, but also to swing your leg laterally, which is similar to a Cossack squat. Barnes explained that this is a great alternative to lunge skips because you can still build lean muscle and burn calories - without stressing your joints. PowerliftingTechnique.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I would use the TRX-assisted Cossack squat as a way to progress lifters to the full Cossack squat. To reduce your risk of injury, it's best to start small.". GQ may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. 7. The video only shows butt kicks at-speed, but you can also slow them down to a walk, reducing the impact and intensity. A sturdy chair or bench usually makes a great height to be used for these. 3. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. It can also lead to back and knee problems. Make sure to keep your core tight, and avoid leaning toward the weighted side. Takeaway: Most effective Cossack squat alternatives should be a single leg variation in order to target the same level of motor control, balance, and stability. There are a whole lot of alternatives to a burpee, so you should never feel obligated to do these at home, especially if you're trying to stick to low-impact workouts. Takeaway: An effective Cossack squat alternative needs to primarily target the glute medius and quad muscles. For more advanced variations of the lateral side lunge, you can hold dumbbells in each hand or place a barbell on your back. 3 Kettlebell Single Leg Deadlift You can still perform a traditional lunge and still be doing a different exercises. Seniors On Medicare Are Getting a Big Pay Day in 2020, Expert: “This credit card is so good I signed up personally”. "This exercise will also improve flexibility in your hip flexors, hamstrings, and quadriceps while strengthening your lower back, core, and glutes. Lateral Lunge. "You'll gain more flexibility and control, while working your core." If you can’t do them, try these alternative lunge exercises to keep your legs in great shape. Work the same muscles with this alternative that Parsons and Barnes both recommend: a lateral lunge … Parsons agreed: "If you can maintain good form and engage your core, pick up the pace to increase the intensity (and sweat! Start with feet shoulder width apart and step out wide to your left into a wide bodyweight squat position, then as you press up, shift your weight (as early as possible) so that the left leg does more of the work and bring your right leg to your left ending in the same position as you started. • Place a band underneath your feet and cross the band in front of you (making an X)• Point your toes forward and assume a slight bent-knee position• Step your feet laterally to the side, walking sideways• Perform the prescribed number of reps in one direction, then switch. You then perform a deep squat. Piper Phillips is a fitness enthusiast, author, wife, and mother. If you choose to use paper plates, a towel, or sliders, make sure the apparatus moves smoothly across the floor. We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post. Try moving your lunges to an uneven surface—if you're on the road, you can even put that extra hotel mattress on the floor and stand on that. Return to starting position and repeat. With step ups, you literally step up, with 1 leg at a time, to the bench or chair. Learn 13 principles that create more effective powerlifting technique. Whether you have just been doing lunges for too long and are sick of them or you can’t do them for a health reason, it is good to add some variety. Lunge progression into a new plan of movement (coronal plane). PowerliftingTechnique.com also participates in affiliate programs with Bluehost, Clickbank, CJ, ShareASale, and other sites. "But for beginners, especially those who've had previous injuries, it's important to start slowly and improve your strength and mobility over time. In a Cossack squat, you would assume a wider than shoulder-width stance and move your body laterally without moving your feet as you cycle through reps. "It's no secret that high-impact and high-intensity cardio workouts burn fat at a faster rate and in a short period," said Amina Barnes, an NASM-certified personal trainer. There are several types of leg press machines that you can choose from. Bulgarian split squat, lateral box step-up, etc.). Shane Barnard, JD. Microsoft may earn an Affiliate Commission if you purchase something through recommended links in this article. Thus, making it a good replacement to the Cossack squat. High knees and high knee skips can be harsh on sensitive knee and hip joints. If you lack access to extensive gym equipment, then the x-band walk can be effective at targeting similar muscle groups to the Cossack squat. Jennifer Forrester: Step-ups. Perform the motion safely by keeping your back flat and your weight mid-foot. Lateral box step-ups are a good alternative to squats, with the added bonus of greater engagement of the abductors and adductors. TRX Lunge. Lower your arms and bring your foot back to the starting position. She's passionate about staying fit, testing new fitness equipment and exercises, and sharing her findings with her dedicated readers. Even with good form lateral lunges can be difficult for some of us and feel extremely awkward. For the sake of finding a Cossack squat alternative, it doesn’t really matter so much which leg press machine you pick. Unilateral exercises help you become more resistant to injury, improve balance, and increase your overall technique and movement pattern. If you suffer from serious knee pain and cannot perform the above 2 kettlebell exercises then the following lunge substitutes will strengthen the legs, hips and buttocks but in a slightly different way. Step one foot out to the side as you bring your arms out and above your head, like you would in a jumping jack. Since 1957, GQ has inspired men to look sharper and live smarter with its unparalleled coverage of style, culture, and beyond. As such, you should pair the side-lying dumbbell clamshell with another quad-focused exercise, like goblet squats, front squats, or leg press. You can perform side slides fast, as shown, or you can slow them down and step them out for a lower-impact, lower-intensity option. If for any reason, you want to ditch the squats and lunges suggested in the Thrillist 31 Day Gym-Free Fitness Challenge, that’s completely fine. Even with good form lateral lunges can be difficult for some of us and feel extremely awkward. Your lower body maintains static strength, while your upper body and core get a killer workout. Begin with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart and toes pointed slightly outward. Idalis Velazquez: Landmine reverse lunges. If you are looking for a substitute, you would obviously want to target those same muscles, which all of the exercises below do. In fact, the box should be right next to your calf/shin as you initiate the movement. The main thing to remember is that your hips should remain lifted, glutes and core engaged, before and during the entire hamstring curl movement. Brace your core and take a big step back with the same leg as the arm holding the barbell. The side-lying dumbbell clamshell is performed lying sideways on the floor with your knees bent at 90-degrees. If you’re working your way up to a regular squat, don’t even worry about how you stand up from the chair after you squat down. As such, to make the X-band squat more specific to the Cossack squat, you can perform the lateral steps while assuming a half-squat position.