5 Key Moves for Stronger Legs

Exercises to tone and fortify your lower body

When it comes to the fitness wish list, it’s pretty common to hear people talking about how they want toned abs, a muscular back and maybe they even mention strong arms, but too often legs get left off the list. The problem with that is, lower body strength is absolutely crucial—for fitness, daily life, everything. Don’t neglect the legs, use these five key moves as inspiration to make “leg day” a priority.

Jump Squats
Start with your arms raised in front of you in whatever position feels most comfortable. Lower into a squat then on the way up power into a jump. Come down from the jump directly into a squat.
Repeat this move for 10-20 reps, depending on your level of fitness.

Romanian Deadlift
Start with your feet hip-width apart, barbell on the floor with a shoulder-width grip and then set your hips back as far as you can while staying balanced. Let your knees bend while you lift the bar and then lower it slowly along your shins until you feel it in the back of your legs.
Repeat this move for 8-15 reps, depending on your level of fitness.

Calf Raise
Find a spot, either a step or block, where your toes are elevated and there’s something for you to grab onto. Slowly lift your heels off the ground, so you are balancing on the balls of your feet and then slowly bring your heels down to feel a stretch in your calves.

Reverse Lunge (with Dumbbells, optional)
Start standing straight with your feet shoulder-width apart, with a dumbbell in each hand if you choose. Pick a leg and take a big step backward, while maintaining control. Lower your hips toward the ground, so your front leg is at a 90 degree angle and your back leg is lower, but not touching the floor. Return to standing and alternate legs.
Repeat this move for 10-20 reps, depending on your level of fitness.

Box Jumps
Start by choosing a height that feels comfortable, but is still challenging. When jumping, the goal is to get both feet firmly planted on top of the box at the same time. This move provides both great cardio and strength benefits.
Repeat this move for 10-20 reps, depending on your level of fitness.

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