Shape Up

Moves to help you tone up your butt and thighs in time for swim­suits sea­son.

Health & Nutrition - - CONTENTS -

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.

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