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If you’re like me and are built at a whopping 5’3″ the idea of dancer’s legs can be quite laughable. It’s not impossible, but if it’s something you weren’t blessed with, it seems unattainable.
That’s just the switch of the thought process. Look at Carrie Underwood. She’s not 5’11” and yet has the BEST legs in entertainment! If you look at her early career, she didn’t have those legs, it took hard work! So, why can’t you have those legs?
I am a firm believer in “Leg Day”. Whether you are working out at home or in the gym, you should have ONE day dedicated to nothing but legs. Even something as simple as these cheap resistance bands make a great leg workout. Leg day usually works your glutes, thighs and calves. After all, you can’t build a house from the top down!
I don’t recommend doing a leg workout every single day. Some people do twice a week. For beginners I’d say once is fine. Don’t burn yourself out. I like to do my leg day on Wednesday so the pain that follows will subside by the weekend.
Just a heads up, the day AFTER the day after will be a bit painful but in the best possible way. You’ll grow to crave that feeling. Of course it isn’t fun to sit down on the toilet only to have your legs give out half way and you slam your thighs into the seat. BUT, pain is change happening in your body! If it was easy, we wouldn’t need motivation.
If you haven’t worked out in a long time you SHOULD feel a burn when doing legs from the beginning. It’s a large group of muscles and is responsible for most of your movement throughout the day.
Basically everything the body was meant to do!
Here’s 8 moves to get you those sexy sleek dancer legs in no time!
Squats Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, and lower your body a far as you can by pushing your hips back and bending your knees (while keeping your knees above your ankles). Pause, then push through your heels to return to start. Do 20 reps, then turn your toes out (as if you’re doing a plie) and repeat.
Clams Lie on your left side on the floor, with your hips and knees bent 45 degrees. Your right leg should be on top of your left leg, and your heels should be stacked together. Keeping your feet in contact with each other, raise your right knee as high as you can without moving your pelvis. Pause, then return to the starting position. Don’t allow your left leg to move off of the floor.
Lateral Jumps Stand feet together, arms at sides. Jump as far to the right as is possible, landing on only the right foot, squatting slightly. Extend the left leg behind the right leg, hovering it low to the ground but not touching the floor. Quickly push off with the right foot, leading with and landing on just the left leg, hovering the right foot behind the supporting leg without touching the ground. Continue from left to right leg until you have completed desired repetitions.
Ice Skaters Balance on your right leg with your left leg 12 to 18 inches off the ground in front of your body. Extend your right arm out to the side for balance if needed and place your left forearm on the small of your back to keep it out of the way. Keep both your legs and your torso as straight as you can, and draw a half circle with your left leg – starting in front of your body and ending directly behind your body. Pause momentarily before reversing the motion to end with your left leg again in front of your body. Complete all repetitions and then switch sides to draw a half circle with the opposite leg. Making a circle from front to back and then back to the front is one repetition.
Calf raises Hold onto a wall with your feet parallel, hip-width apart. Keep your knees straight and rise up onto your toes as high as you can. Pause, then slowly lower back to the floor. Do 15 reps, and then turn your toes out, heels together, and repeat.
Fire hydrant in-out Start on your hands and knees, then raise your right knee off the ground and bring it toward your chest, keeping your back flat. Keeping your right knee bent, raise your thigh out to the side without moving your hips. Slowly lower back to start. Do 10, then repeat on the other side.
Single-leg lift Get on your hands and knees and raise one leg off the ground so it’s in line with your body. Your back should be flat, core tight, foot flexed (imagine you’re trying to reach your heel toward the wall behind you). This is the starting position. Keeping your leg straight and, without arching your back, squeeze your glute and raise your leg a few inches toward the ceiling. Pause, then lower back to the starting position. Do 10, then repeat on the other side.
Pelvic raises Lie down on your back with your knees bent, feet hip-width apart and resting flat on the floor. Then raise your hips so your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. Pause, then lower back to the starting position. Repeat slowly 30 times. Position your feet a few inches further away from your body and repeat.
What is your FAVORITE leg exercise? Comment below!
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