Abs have crunches. Arms have curls. Butts have squats. Thighs have…what? A whole lot of resentment, that’s what. Fortunately, there are plenty of thigh exercises out there to help you achieve stronger, sculpted legs. Holly Perkins, CSCS, author of Lift to Get Lean, designed the ultimate thigh workout to help you strengthen and define every inch of your lower half so no muscle goes untouched. While some of the exercises use your bodyweight for resistance, as you get stronger and develop more muscles, it’s important to add resistance.
“Muscles become larger when you add more and more resistance. But when you only do bodyweight exercises, you eliminate the progressive resistance because your body weight always stays (roughly) the same,” Perkins says.
Ready to power up those thighs? Here’s the workout: Perform two sets of 10 to 12 reps for each exercise, resting 1 minute in between sets. When using weights, aim for a load that will require you to struggle to finish the last two reps of each set.
Holding two dumbbells at your sides, stand with your feet hip-width apart and toes turned slightly out. Keeping your chest up, push your hips back and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor, or as far down as you can go. Return to the starting position by pressing through your heels. Hate squats? Try this no-squats belly, butt, and thighs workout.