Lesson 23, Topic 1
In Progress

Lunge-N-Reach With Twist

Michael Bewley March 27, 2019

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The DWMA Lunge-N-Reach is a combination movement screen that examines the following kinetic chain joint segments:

  • T-Spine Mobility
  • Hip Flexion
  • Hip Extension
  • Hip Stability
  • Big Toe Mobility

TIP #1: Pay particular attention to the athlete’s heel of the trail leg to determine if it spins/turns outward (posterior lateral). This movement compensation happens when Big-Toe flexion/mobility is limited.

TIP #2: As the athlete reaches across his body (transverse), make notice with how their front foot makes contact with the ground. If the foot lifts/teeters on the outside edge, this is a typical movement compensation when T-Spine Mobility is limited.

TIP #3: As the athlete reaches up and over while flexing the core laterally (frontal plane), take notice if the athlete bends forward to touch the ground. If observed, this movement compensation happens when lateral T-Spine Mobility is limited.

TIP #4: As the athlete reaches around and behind toward the ankle of the rear leg, take notice if the athlete maintains balance and touch the ankle (lateral malleolus). If observed, this movement compensation occurs when Thoracic Extension is limited.


The next dynamic movement assessment is a combination movement I call lunge and reach. As the athlete performs this movement, they transition into a deep, forward lunge position. As they transition, the athlete simultaneously reaches and extends the arms up overhead, extending the core and twisting in a transverse motion toward the lunging side of the leg. During this movement, we want to monitor T-spine mobility and thoracic extension. Also, we want to observe hip flexion, strength, and stability and hip extension in the trail leg.

If the athlete struggles to maintain balance posture during or between move transitions, they will likely benefit from quad mobility exercises along with hip mobility and strengthening exercises outlined in the kinetic chain corrective exercises video. Also, if the athlete struggles to extend the overhead arms while in a twisting motion, it’s recommended that the athlete perform T-spine mobility exercises illustrated, again, in the kinetic chain corrective exercises video.


All right. This week’s DWMA exercise of the week, want to talk about the lunge-and-reach, and in particular, a couple of viewing angles you wish to see, and not just looking at the lunge, but also looking at some other kinematics, looking at actual, the big toe. There’s nothing sexy about having a flexible big toe, but it’s imperative in terms of athletic performance. It’s going to allow us to be able to push off, be able to create the sprint speed and power, be prepared to direct that power in the correct way that we want, and not have any leakage, but be able to transfer that power most efficiently.

One of the things here, when we make the lunge-and-reach you have the athletes come down, we’re pulling across, we’re looking, we see how comfortable, what sort of rotation that we see here with that athlete. Couple other things that we throw in here now, that I’ve added to the DWMA is, I want to be able to see the different flexion here from the sagittal frontal and the transverse plane here in the trunk and the T-spine.

One way I’m able to do that this is one here, but I’m ready to reach over, plug the fingers to the floor, how well is that athlete able to do that? Then, being able to twist and reach across, and then from that position, be prepared to bend and reach back and touch that heel. I’ll give you a different angle here from the side. Again, twisting and reaching across, plugging those fingers over to the side, twisting, and then being able to bend back, maintain that position. As you can see, I was a little unbalanced there.

One other thing that we’re going to look at is big toe mobility. Again, from the rear angle, we want to be able to see how well this athlete can be in this toe off position, as they twist and work through this range of motion. Lots of times, you’ll see athletes with big toe flexibility problems. This heel will spin out, and you’ll see this as they progress through that range of motion. When you start to see that, that’s an immediate sign that you see some big toe flexibility problems that need needs addressed with that athlete.

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