Back to Basics: 3 Moves to Tone Your Legs

There are a slew of complicated leg-toning moves out there that can be more difficult to follow than the plot of an indie film. Ditch the complexities and go back to basics with these three moves that tone your hips, saddlebags, and glutes.

Sumo Crab Walk
Works: Inner thighs and glutes
Need: Room to walk

1. Get into a sumo wrestling stance: your feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes pointed out, and knees extended over the toes.
2. Keep your back straight, chest out, and abs tight throughout this move.
3. In this almost-sitting position, take a step forward, one foot at a time, and advance as far as you can go in the space you are in; then turn around and walk back to your starting position.
4. Do 20 steps total or until you feel the burn in your legs.

Leg Balancer
Works: Inner and outer thighs
Need: A bench, flat chair, or countertop

1. Stand straight and place your hands on the top of a bench, back of a chair, or counter-top edge.
2. Raise your right leg to the right side of your body, keeping your foot “flexed.” When you lower your leg, don’t rest it on the ground but continue the movement, raising your leg up again on the other side.
3. Always remain in control of the movement; don’t simply swing your leg up and down.
4. Repeat 25 times on each side.
For an added challenge and to increase the results:
a. Add a 10-pound weight on the balancing leg.
b. Let go of the bench or chair that you were using to keep your balance.

One-Legged Swiss Ball Squats
Works: Upper thighs and glutes
Need: A Swiss ball and a wall

1. Stand straight, place the Swiss ball against the wall, and lean your back on it.
2. Stretch out your arms in front of you, and choose a point straight ahead to focus on.
3. Stretch your right leg out in front of you, and raise it to a horizontal position, parallel to the floor if possible; if not, simply raise your leg as much as you can.
4. Your left leg should be slightly bent at the knee, your heel planted and your toes raised off the floor. By raising your toes you will achieve better results on your thighs, the back of your leg, and glutes. You will now descend slowly to a sitting position — basically doing a squat on your left leg and using the Swiss ball as your support.
5. Slowly return to standing position.
6. Repeat 10 times on each leg.

Do a circuit of these moves three times, with three to five minutes of heart-pumping cardio like jumping rope, stair climbing, or speed walking in between each set. Also, follow a meal plan to really see results.