This weekend’s challenge focuses on the lower body, and like walking, it strengthens the bones in your legs, including the thighs (femurs). In addition, the Femur Strengthener And Coordination Enhancer targets the glutes and calf muscles, preventing falls and improving coordination.

Also known as the Forward Reverse Lunge, this targeted move is perfect for those times when you can’t go for a walk due to inclement weather or when you simply don’t have enough time.

We’ll also take a look at a fascinating study on the prevalence of sarcopenia (loss of muscle mass) as we age, and how exercises such as the Femur Strengthener And Coordination Enhancer offset this tendency.

Let’s get started with this highly effective exercise!

Why:

The femur is the strongest bone in the human body, but that doesn’t mean it can’t break. And if you’ve ever taken bisphosphonates, you are at greater risk for sustaining a femur fracture. Unfortunately, they take a long time to heal.

The Femur Strengthener And Coordination Enhancer works the quadriceps, the muscle groups in the front of your thigh, stimulating the formation of new bone. These are also key muscles involved in balance.

Because the lunge mimics the walking gait, it is a very functional exercise that trains your body to move through space without losing balance. In addition, the lunge motion activates the buttocks muscles (glutes) and hamstrings far more than other lower-body exercises. These muscles are neglected in our modern world, where sitting down much of the day is the norm.

When you do this exercise, your core muscles stay engaged and controlled. Toned core muscles are crucial for balance and coordination, and even for proper posture. Because they are deep within your center, your core muscles hold your spine and pelvis in alignment.

The Femur Strengthener And Coordination Enhancer is a two-part move, and the second motion involves some different muscles in your legs, but the core remains controlled and tight. When it comes to everyday activities, the backward portion of this exercise is not a motion we make very often, so it “wakes up” seldom-used muscles.

How:

Wear comfortable shoes for this exercise. If you wish to do it with light weights to make it more challenging, that’s just fine, but practice the move without weights first.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Keeping your back straight and your head facing forward, step forward into a lunge.
  3. Focus your weight on the heel of your front foot, and kneel with your back leg so your knee almost hits the ground.
  4. Push with your front heel and go back to a standing position – but don’t stop there. Continue on to the next step.
  5. Take the same leg that was just forward and bring it back behind you. Both knees will bend once again, with the back leg’s knee almost touching the ground.
  6. Come back up and do a forward lunge again, and repeat the entire move, forward and back, 10 times (you can do fewer or more if you like, depending on your comfort level).
  7. Switch sides and repeat for another set of 10.

Study Underscores The Importance Of Exercising To Prevent Muscle Loss

Research makes it clear that the loss of muscle mass, or sarcopenia, is a common occurrence among the elderly. By the time we reach our 75th birthday, “maximal voluntary contractile strength is decreased, on average, by 20-40% for both men and women,”1 the study notes. And this decrease occurs in both proximal and distal muscles – in other words, all of them!

It’s easy to think you have to undergo a killer workout to overcome muscle loss, but actually, as long as it’s done regularly, exercise does not have to be overly vigorous to be effective at staving off sarcopenia. That’s one of the reasons why the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System is more about regularity than severity. But don’t get me wrong – the exercises in this digital eBook system are quite challenging and effective.

Densercise™ is also customizable, so if you find the exercises too difficult or too easy, you can make adjustments to the challenge level by increasing reps and adding weights.

As we age, the many benefits of exercise become even more important. Densercise™ works for any age, but it’s most certainly a must for the over-50 crowd!

Have a great weekend!

References

1 Doherty, T.J. “Invited review: Aging and sarcopenia.” Journal of Applied Physiology. October 2003. 95(4): 1717-27. Web. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12970377

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  1. Nanci J Kersch, LAc

    I’ve seen numerous requests for a DVD and have not seen an answer! Do you have one for sale?

  2. Marlyn Namato

    Dear Vivian, I heartedly appreciate all the e-mails you have been sending me during the short time I have been in contact with you. As to the cow milk, I have stopped drinking it for a very long time. It was when I came to know about organic products among which there are various types of vegetable milks such as Oat milk (my favourite), Almonds milk, etc. I cannot afford to buy everything organic, but I’d never exchange veg. milk for cow milk. Thank you very much, Vivian, and I wish you a Happy Easter with warm hugs, Marlyn.

  3. Sylvia Harrigan

    Dear Vivían, you’re just wonderful!! thank you so much for always looking for new ways to help us keep our bones as healthy as possible. I like this exercise!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You are most welcome, Sylvia, and I am glad you like this exercise. 🙂

  4. Judy Drabiuk

    I really appreciate all the exercises that are sent.
    However, I find I have to frequently stop at various stages to refresh my memory of the correct steps to follow. A CD format would be great as an “instructor” is there to show you the correct steps/form. Might there be an availability of one soon?

  5. Gail

    I am so impressed with all of your exercises especially your weekend challenges, however having short term memory I find I have to keep stopping to look at the drawings which I have a hard time focussing on the detail & I find it so frustrating I am giving up altogether. My daughter suggested using a DVD which would be much easier for the older sufferers of osteoporosis to follow. Could you please tell me if you have a DVD for sale? I am sure there are many of your followers that would be similar to me ( that can follow instructions by watching directly & copying simultaneously) it would be similar to being in an exercise class with the bonus of your expertise for targeting areas specifically for bone health. Kindest regards, Gail

    • Jenny Wright

      I too would love a DVD to follow.I have the books but it isn’t the same.There is a problem,of course,with DVDs being copied for free which is probably why this hasn’t been done yet.

  6. shula

    THANKS

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You’re very welcome, Shula!

  7. Betty

    Thanks for reminder about the lunge. I was able to do several and I am also appreciating the exercise for the forward head. The exercises you send have proven to be a helpful add on sometimes to other ones I do. Have a fragile back but do what I can!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Love your attitude, Betty! Keep up with the exercises 🙂

  8. Mariana

    Hi Vivian,
    How can I do this exercise if I have arthritis and I cannot bend my knees like that?
    Thanks,
    Mariana

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      You can still strengthen your femur with exercises that don’t require bending your knees. Here’s one example that you can actually do sitting down:

      https://saveourbones.com/weekend-challenge-the-femur-strengthener/
      There are several others in the Weekend Challenges and also in Densercise, so feel free to use the Search feature at the top of the page.

  9. Marlene Villar

    Dear Vivian,
    As I read those testimonials, I was in tears because
    of the huge encouragements and joy I felt @ this
    moment. I have faith and hope that in HIS timing I, too
    will reverse my bone loss naturally, despite that I came to
    know your program eleven months ago. Vivian, thank
    you very, very much for sharing your knowledge to all
    of us. I truly appreciates the recipe book as well as the
    New expanded edition of SAVEOURBONESPROGRAM.
    All the e-mails, exercises that you continue sharing
    are blessings. Have a wonderful day. Marlene

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Thanks for your kind words and for sharing all these positive thoughts with us, Marlene!

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