A Comprehensive Comparison of Kinematic, EMG, and Ground Reaction Force Activity During 5 Different Lunging Techniques

Open Access
Kirlin, Lindsay E
Area of Honors:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Jinger Gottschall, Thesis Supervisor
  • Steriani Elavsky, Honors Advisor
  • lunge
  • EMG
  • ground reaction force
The purpose of this study was to compare muscle EMG activity and ground reaction forces at the patellofemoral joint during different lunge techniques; the dynamic forward stepping and dynamic backward stepping were compared while the basic static lunge, basic static lunge with an external load, and curtsey lunge were compared. It was hypothesized for the dynamic conditions to exhibit similar EMG activity in all of the muscles, while the ground reaction force would be higher in the forward stepping lunge. It was also hypothesized all the static lunge conditions will have not significantly different EMG activity but there will be a significant difference in the ground reaction forces, with the curtsey lunge having the highest force experienced. Eight, four male and four female, active college students completed 5 different lunge techniques (forward stepping, backward stepping, static, static with external load, and static curtsey) with both the right leg and left leg as the lead leg. While this was correct, the ground reaction force data, although higher for forward stepping vs. backward stepping, was not significant. The ground reaction forces experienced in the static lunge conditions were highest for the static plate and lowest for the basic static lunge (Figure 10). Once again although higher, the force exerperinced via the curtsey lunge was not significant in comparison to the basic static lunge (Figure 21). The hypothesis of the similar EMG activities, with the gluteus maximus and rectus femoris being the dominant muscles in each condition as seen in Figures 2, 3, 13, and 14, was confirmed. The VL and ST had consistent EMG activity in each lunge condition, while the BF activity was almost half as low as the RF activities in some cases; this supports previous findings of the BF co-contracting with the RF during the lunge, which is speculated to help stabilize the lower extremities.