Sculpt your lower body with these squat and lunge routines



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Many of us have a love/hate relationship with squats and lunges. They’re effective at toning your lower body, including hard-to-sculpt areas like your thighs and derriere. Unfortunately, you can sometimes lose sight of their effectiveness when your booty is burning and your thighs are quivering like a heroine in a smutty romance novel.

Not feeling the burn? Then you could be doing them wrong. Pro tip: if it seems too easy, you’re probably not practicing proper form. HellaWella’s shown you how to modify these moves for those with knee issues, and now, you can really whip your lower body into shape with these squat and lunge tutorials and workouts.


Basic squat and lunge tutorials


1. Daily Burn: How to Do a Squat

Daily Burn

Proper form is everything. Without it, you won’t reap the benefits of exercise, and could end up injuring yourself. No thanks. Daily Burn trainer Anja Garcia stars in this short tutorial that perfectly breaks down form and movement, showing you exactly how to perform a basic squat the right way. Beginners can start here and practice, taking this knowledge into their other workouts.


2. Livestrong: How to Do Lunges

Lunges are a deceptively simple. They look so easy: you’re just stepping out, right? Wrong. Let Gold’s Gym trainer Michelle Trapp show you how it’s done. What’s great about this video is that Trapp not only shows you the right way to do a lunge, but also demonstrates the wrong way to do a lunge, pointing out the biggest flaw in form and making sure you avoid this common misstep. You’ll also learn simple variation to increase difficulty and a basic recommendation for reps, whether you’re alternating sides or working one side at a time. A great primer for newbies.


Step it up with these variations


3. Health: How to Do a Curtsy Lunge


The curtsy lunge can be hard to perform correctly, but with this short and straightforward tutorial from Kristin McGee, you’ll be able to understand the mechanics behind the movement. This is a great option once you’ve become more familiar with the basic lunge.


4. Women’s Health: The Right Way to do Lateral Lunges

Women's Health

Lateral lunges are a bit tricky, but this excellent tutorial from Holly Perkins demystifies the movement with short freeze frames that actually point out the specificity of movement as Perkins describes it, so every nuance is well illustrated.


5. Self: Five Squat and Lunge Variations That Seriously Tone Your Backside

Self courtesy of PopSugar

This short workout in Self magazine courtesy of Pop Sugar is the perfect mix of squats and lunges for you to master. It’s all bodyweight-based, so it’s great for those who aren’t ready for weights quite yet or want a workout with minimal equipment, but there are also instructions for adding weights if you choose. This tutorial includes clear images and detailed instructions, which helps you to find your proper form and understand each step involved in the movements.


6. Blogilates: I Really Like You Squat Challenge

Cassey Ho gets back to her Pop Pilates roots with this intense workout. It’s a nonstop squat-fest set to Carly Rae Jepsen’s “I Really Like You” so depending on whether Jepsen’s your cup of tea, you’ll either feel mild torture or questioning your life choices by the end of the video. Regardless of your feelings towards Jepsen, your thighs and butt will burn in the best kind of way. This is for those who have a handle on several types of squats, as you will be switching up squats quickly and getting lesser known variations like duck squats.


Stretch it out with yoga


7. Yoga by Candace: How to do Malasana Pose

Yoga by Candace

This deep yoga squat is amazing for opening the hips and releasing tension, but it’s also more difficult than it looks. The images in this tutorial from yogi Candace Moore point out areas to pay special attention to while performing the move and how to modify if you’re less familiar with the pose. Also, Moore gives additional pointers to readers in the comments on foot placement.


8. Yoga with Adriene: Runner’s Lunge

A runner’s lunge is a great stretch, but it can be a bit intimidating, especially if you’re unsure how to modify it and have issues finding your balance. That’s why I love this thorough video. Adriene Mishler walks you through each and every step taken during this movement, including tricks on how to align your body and find your center to maintain balance.

Remember to talk to your medical professional before getting started. Now get low and get fit!