Moves to help you tone up your butt and thighs in time for swimsuits season.
Be beach ready with these butttoning exercises
You can turn those common problem areas into a beach-ready bottom half with this slimming Pilates workout. Do this 10-minute workout three times a week, and you’ll be ready for the beach in no time. Exhale and slowly lower your leg until it’s about a foot above the mat. Immediately inhale and raise it toward the ceiling again to complete the rep. Do 3-5 reps, then switch legs and repeat.
1 SHOULDER BRIDGE
ALie on a mat on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and arms at your sides. Keeping your feet, head, and shoulders on the mat, lift your butt high enough to put your hands under your body just above your butt for support. Inhale, bring your right knee toward your chest, then straighten your leg and point your toes to the ceiling.
2 DOUBLE LEG BEATS
A Lie on your right side along the back edge of the mat. Support your head with your right hand, and place your left hand on the mat in front of you. Stack your straight legs one on top of the other and point your toes. Tighten your abs, inhale, and lift both legs up off the mat about 6-12 inches, without letting your upper body roll forward or back. Holding your legs off the mat, lightly and rapidly beat your heels and thighs together 10 times. Breathe naturally through the beats, then exhale as you lower your legs to the mat to complete the set. Do 3-5 sets of 10 beats.
3 LEG PULLDOWN
A Get in plank position with your abs tight, arms straight and directly below your shoulders (don’t lock your elbows), and toes on the mat. Inhale, and use two small kicks to lift your right leg as high as you can toward the ceiling without moving the rest of your body. Exhale as you return your leg to the mat. Repeat with the left leg to complete the set. Do 3-5 sets.
Tip: Imagine you’re using your leg to pull down on a heavy spring attached to the wall behind you. Resist the pull of the spring on the way back up.
Tip: Imagine your leg is being pulled toward the ceiling by a magnet and you’re fighting to bring it back down.