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  • Writer's pictureKeep It Moving PT & Wellness

Week 28: Alternating Retro Lunge with Kettlebell

Updated: Dec 18, 2023

For the month of December, we have selected skiing specific exercises that will help build strength and endurance to make your knees bulletproof from groomers to moguls ⛷️

Exercise: Alternating Retro Lunge with Kettlebell

Purpose: To strengthen primarily the quads, hamstrings and glutes with low orthopedic cost to the knee joints, while also challenging balance 

What It Targets: Loading of the Quadriceps, Hamstrings, Gluteus Maximus, Gluteus Medius; Internal Obliques, External Obliques, Transverse Abdominis; Ankle Plantarflexors


  1. Stand with your feet together and hold a kettlebell by the horns up to your chest

  2. Reach one foot back behind you so your knee is bent to 90 degrees. Dig your toes into the floor.

  3. Keeping your trunk in line with the thigh of the back leg, lower yourself towards the floor as low as comfortable, ideally tapping the knee onto the floor.

  4. Maintain a slight posterior pelvic tilt using your core and the glutes of the back leg.

  5. Press through your toes using your glutes as you return to standing with feet together.

  6. Repeat on the other leg.

  7. Repeat as prescribed. 

Main Cues:

  • Limit trunk motion and keep it in line with the thigh of your back leg 

  • Do not let your knee cave in towards midline

  • Keep your feet, shins and thighs parallel the entire time

  • Keep weight close to your body, touching your chest

Common Compensations/Adverse Effects:

  • Knee pain

Correction: Be sure to avoid collapsing the knee in towards midline; Decrease the range of motion to a comfortable one; Decrease the weight

  • Anterior trunk lean

Correction: Perform this exercise in a mirror (ideally with a side view) so you have visual feedback of trunk position; Focus on keeping the horns of the bell perpendicular to the floor throughout the entire exercise

  • Anterior hip pain/intense stretch

Correction: Decrease the length of your step to take tension off of the front of the hip; Make sure your core is active and you are focusing on stacking ribcage over pelvis; Perform a posterior pelvic tilt

Why We Love It:

  • It strengthens basically all of the leg muscles while putting minimal stress on the knees; ie low orthopedic cost

  • It trains the muscles necessary for navigating moguls, and turns for those savages who telemark 

  • It challenges dynamic balance, proprioception and overall stability that is crucial for functional movements like picking things up off the floor

*Disclaimer: Not all exercises are suitable for everyone, and participation in novel activities may increase the risk of adverse effects such as pain, soreness, or injury. Please consult with your Physician or a local Physical Therapist prior to attempting any exercise you feel uncomfortable performing. If adverse reactions occur, discontinue performance of the exercise and consult your physician or trusted clinician for evaluation.

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