Exercise Profile
  • Target Muscle Group
  • Exercise TypeStrength
  • Equipment RequiredBarbell
  • MechanicsCompound
  • Force TypePush (Unilateral)
  • Experience LevelAdvanced
  • Secondary Muscles
    Abs, Adductors, Calves, Glutes, Hamstrings, Shoulders, Traps, Upper Back
Target Muscle Group


Quads Muscle Anatomy Diagram

Walking Barbell Lunge Overview

The barbell walking lunge was a favorite among a lot of the old school bodybuilders who trained during the golden era of bodybuilding.

The barbell walking lunge is a complete leg builder which combines cardio conditioning to weightlifting to deliver a serious leg pump. They are an advanced variation of the lunge movement and a progression to the barbell lunge.

The barbell walking lunge can be performed for a set number of repetitions or a set distance depending on your training style and individual goals.

Walking Barbell Lunge Instructions

  1. Set up with your feet shoulder width apart and the bar positioned across your traps.
  2. Step forward with one leg and allow both knees to bend simultaneously.
  3. Descend until the back knee touches the floor.
  4. Drive through the front foot and extend the knee as you stand up fully and return to the starting position.
  5. Repeat on the opposite leg.
  6. Repeat the desired number of repetitions.

Walking Barbell Lunge Tips

  1. Do not progress to the elevated version until you have fully mastered the bodyweight version of this movement. Adding range of motion without having the requisite motor control is a recipe for disaster. Learn to walk before you try to run.
  2. Walking lunges are a more advanced progression and should only be utilized once one has the requisite hip and core stability. In general, a proper single leg progression scheme might look like this:
    • Step Up
    • Split Squat > Front foot elevated
    • Reverse Lunge > Front foot elevated
    • Single Leg Squat to Bench
    • Lateral Lunge
    • Bulgarian/Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat (RFESS)
    • Single Leg Squat From Bench
    • Walking Lunge
    • Forward Lunge
    • Single Leg Skater Squat
    • Pistol Squat
  3. Don’t rush the progression scheme, earn the right to use every exercise and don’t neglect any of them.
    • When you go to push back to the starting position, fight the urge to lead the movement with your shoulders by hyperextending at your spine. Instead, look to drive the movement via force from your lower body.
    • In the bottom of the movement both of your legs should be at 90 degree angles at the knees.
    • Keep in mind that with any sort of lunge or split squat pattern, if you want to emphasize the quads, focus on taking a slightly smaller step and drive up through the ball of the foot.
    • If you want to emphasize the glutes and hamstrings during any sort of lunge or split squat pattern, focus on taking a slightly larger step and drive up through the heel of the foot.