Cool Total Body Exercise: Lumberjack Reverse Lunge/Press Combo

Posted on by Ben Bruno

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a new Exercise of the Week, so I thought I’d share this one that I really like. As is typical for me, I can’t think of anything good to call it, so I copped out with Lumberjack Reverse Lunge/Press Combo. Rather than try to describe how to do it through words, which could get a little confusing since there’s a lot to it, I’ll just show a short video.

If you can think of a better name, I’m all ears.

I like this exercise for a few reasons and think it could have a place in your training program depending on your goals. I think it works best when done with lighter weights where you focus on keeping the reps fast and explosive. Along those same lines, I’ve experimented with doing the reps more slowly and having each rep stand alone with a pause in between, and I’ve also tried doing the reps faster and making the lunge portion into one smooth, fluid motion like I show in the video. I personally think that works better, but it takes more balance and coordination, so you may want to slow it down in the beginning to get the hang of it.

Combo exercises like this are not ideal for building absolute strength, and the amount of weight you’ll use will be limited by how much you can press, so you won’t be able to tax your legs fully. Still, I think this could work well as an assistance exercise later in the workout, or as part of a conditioning circuit. It would actually be great in that scenario because it uses a lot of different muscles and really gets the heart rate up. It’ll also teach you to control your body and move as one continuous unit, and it will tax the core heavily through anti-rotation and anti-lateral-flexion.

I think most people will find this to be quite joint-friendly too. Reverse lunges tend to be better tolerated by folks with knee pain, while angled presses tend to be easier on the shoulders than a true overhead press, both because of the angle and because of the fact that your able to use a neutral grip.

Give this a shot and let me know what you think.

Quick knee update: Things are getting better, but slowly. It’s very frustrating, but I’m doing my best to stay off of it and be patient. I’ve started physical therapy, and I’ve also started doing some light upper body training (just bodyweight stuff where my leg doesn’t touch the ground), but it’s obviously very toned down. I’m walking a little better, but I still can’t be on it too long before it swells up. I’ll continue to keep you posted, and I really appreciate all the messages and support. It means a lot.

It’s crazy how fast you lose it when you can’t train. Here is a picture of my leg a week post-op.

Don’t let yourself go over the holidays! Have fun, and enjoy the time with your friends and family, but keep training hard!

Remember to subscribe to my You Tube channel for more cool exercises.

Lastly, if you missed the Blog Awards and Video Awards this week, give those a peak.

Enjoy the weekend, and be safe tomorrow night!

  • Neel

    Lumberjack Unilateral Thrusters?
    Ben, I’m not sure if it’s the video angle, but you see how, when you’re in the hole, you tilt toward the weight-bearing arm? I had the same problem for a long time, and I found that keeping my shoulders and hips parallel to each other (and the ground) is important in patterning the movement correctly.

    • Neel

      PS obviously a little cheat is okay depending on the goal (ie energy systems work for a strong guy like you), but the intention to remain in alignment is what’s important..

  • Neel

    PPS And as I reread your post, it’s obvious you already thought about all that. “It’ll also teach you to control your body and move as one continuous unit, and it will tax the core heavily through anti-rotation and anti-lateral-flexion.” Apologies.

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