When you guys talk, we listen. And we've been hearing a lot of requests lately for exercises that firm up your thighs. Amber Edwards, group fitness manager at Equinox Soho in New York City, offered up these little moves. Try one or all of them, and you'll get killer legs in no time.
By Korin Miller
The Plyometric Lunge
Start in a lunge position with your right leg in front. Your front knee should be bent so that it is directly over the heel, forming a 90 degree angle. Jump straight up as you switch legs, landing in a lunge position with your left leg in front. Repeat this, alternating legs, eight times.
The Plie Squat
Start with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width, with your toes pointed out on a diagonal. Squat down with your knees opening wide until they are almost in line with your hips. Hold this position for three seconds and start again, repeating eight times.
The Ball Squeeze
Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Place a ball or similar object between your knees. Squeeze your thighs into the ball as you lift your hips off the floor into a bridge position, keeping shoulders and arms on the floor. Continue squeezing the ball as you slowly lower your hips down to the floor. Repeat eight times and rest. Then do another set of eight.
Related: How to Get Amazing Abs
The Wall Squat Stand with your back against a wall, with your feet shoulder-width apart. Keeping your back against the wall and spine in a neutral position, slowly bend your knees until they are in a 90-degree angle over your heels. Hold the squat position for eight seconds, then slowly straighten your legs and return to starting position. Repeat this five times.
The Curtsy Lunge
Start in a standing position with your knees slightly bent and feet shoulder-width apart. Lift your left foot and cross it behind your right leg, wide enough so that both knees can bend into a deep curtsy. Return your left foot to the standing position and switch legs so that the right foot crosses behind the left leg into a curtsy. Repeat this eight times on each side.
Straight Leg Circles
Lie on a mat, keeping your tail bone on the mat. With your left knee bent and foot on the floor, lift your right leg straight up and point your toe, lengthening as much as possible. Slowly rotate your right leg outward and around into a wide circle, keeping your back and hips on the mat. Do eight outward rotations, and then do eight inward rotations. Switch legs and repeat.
Related: 5 Tricks for Sexier Legs
Lie on the mat with your hands under your hips (to provide support for your back). Pull your abs in to allow your shoulders to come up off the mat as you lift your legs into a 45-degree angle off the floor. Keeping your legs straight and toes pointed, cross your right leg over the left and switch. Repeat for 15 seconds and rest. Do three sets.
The Lateral Lunge
Start in a standing position with your toes pointed forward and one dumbbell in each hand. Step the right foot directly out to the right side and bend your right knee low enough to tap the dumbbells on the floor. Pull your right leg in as you rise up to a standing position, bending your elbows into a bicep curl. Repeat with the left leg. Do this eight times on each side.
The Lateral Raise
Stand with your feet together, hands gently touching a wall or chair for balance. Lift your right leg directly out to the side, rotating your hip forward so that your toe points to the front. Lower your right leg and bring it across the front of your standing leg as far as it will go, engaging the inner thigh. Repeat this eight times with your right leg, then switch to your left.
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