When you think about toning your thighs, equipment typically found at the gym may seem a necessity. And while, yes, barbells, pulley systems, and cardio machines may be helpful, there are plenty of at-home thigh exercises that deliver similar results–if not better, since working out at home creates a lot less room for excuses not to fit in your fitness! To set your lower half on fire, give these exercises a try. Pick a few, or make it your full at home thigh workout.
Your At-Home Thigh Workout
With little to no equipment necessary, you can get great looking legs that are strong enough to do anything you set your mind toward.
- Yoga Block Squat Hold: Squats are a great full-body workout, with special emphasis on the booty. To bring the thighs in on the fun, add a yoga block–or rolled up towel or firm pillow–between your thighs. Like a squat, you’re going to lower your glutes down and back with your feet below your hips. But to up the thigh intensity, focus on squeezing against the yoga block to tone the inner leg muscles–not to mention your core. Hands can be at prayer position in front of your chest, or extend your arms overhead with shoulders lowered to add in some upper body work. Hold this pose for seven slow inhales and exhales. Stand and shake out your legs before completing two more rounds.
- Ankle Squeeze and Lifts: This exercise has a small range of motion, but offers big results. Lying on your left side with your head propped on your left hand, place a small air-filled ball–again, a rolled up towel or small pillow works, too–between your ankles. Place your right hand on the floor in front of your chest for stability. Squeeze your ankles together against the ball, and at the same time, lift your ankles off the floor using the strength of your inner thighs. Hold off the ground for three to five seconds before slowly lowering back down. Complete 10-12 reps before repeating on the right side.
- Frog Rotation Hops: Now that you’re plenty warmed up, it’s time to get your heart pumping. Stand with your feet in a wide squat position, with feet slightly wider than hip distance.
Squat down toward the floor, lowering so much so that your hands touch the ground with your chest lifted. Power up your legs and jump up as you rotate your body in a quarter turn, extending your hands overhead. When you land, come back down to the low squat position, but now facing the left side of the room. Continue these jumps in quick repetitions until you complete a full rotation, facing the same direction as where you first started. Take a one-minute break before completing another set in the opposite direction. Aim to complete three sequences in each direction.
- Scissors: Take a breather on the floor, with the exercise that works your thigh and core. Lie back on the floor with your arms at your side, palms down. Extend your feet straight up toward the ceiling with toes pointed. Engage your core so that your lower back is pushed against the floor. At the same time, slowly open your legs to a V position. Using your thigh and lower abs, raise your legs up and criss-cross them at the top. Open again to the V position and criss-cross again on the rise, this time with the opposite foot in front. Continue to switch back and forth between the crossing legs, making sure you are using your muscles to do the work and not relying on momentum. Complete two sets of 20 total repetitions.
- Cossack Squats: This squat variation is great for targeting the inner and outer thighs. Start in a standing position with feet just below the hips and arms extended in front of the body.Step out to your right side and lower into a squat with your left leg straight and your right leg bent. At the bottom of your squat, your chest should be lifted, and your left toes should rotate off the floor. Hold here for a count of three before powering down through the right leg and returning to a standing position. Repeat on the left side. Alternate back and forth between right and left, completing three rounds of 10 reps. To up the intensity, complete all the reps on one leg before switching to the other side.
What are your favorite at-home thigh exercises? Tell us in the comments!