Tree pose - toned legs in 5 moves - PICTURE - Women's Health & Fitness

5. Tree Pose

Why you’ll do it: Amazing for thighs, this pose also stimulates glutes and core and improves sense of balance.
»    Strengthens thighs, calves, ankles and spine
»    Stretches the lower abs and inner thighs, chest and shoulders
»    Improves sense of balance

 

What you’ll do: There’s a good reason to leave this pose until last; the balance component is ideal for recalibrating after your workout while still getting primary benefits (kind of like an encore). To start, stand with feet together and shift your weight slightly onto the left foot, keeping the inner foot firm to the floor, and bend your right knee.

Option A: Reach down with your right hand and clasp your right ankle.

Option B: Lift your right foot up and place the sole against the inner left thigh; press the right heel into the inner left thigh, toes pointing toward the floor.
Hips in line and ensuring the knee is back in line with your hips and gently working the pose.

Pull your tailbone toward the floor. Firmly press the right foot sole against the inner thigh and resist with the outer left leg – it helps to use the heel of the standing foot to keep you grounded.

Press your hands together or keep them above your head. Soften your eyes and keep your gaze on one fixed point in front of you to help keep your balance.

Stay for 30 seconds to one minute. Repeat for the other side.

Avoid: Pushing your foot into the knee and ensure it’s either resting on the calf or the thigh as high as possible. 

NEXT: Even MORE exercises for toned legs>>