Oh, if only tightening your inner thighs and butt came down to performing a few targeted exercises. They certainly help, and you should execute them with precision and enthusiasm at least every second day; but for the best results, perform at least 150 minutes a week of aerobic-type workouts such as brisk walking in addition to your inner thigh and butt exercises. Your adductors -- inner thigh muscles -- and your glutes -- butt muscles -- will benefit from this versatile campaign to reduce the flab and replace it with toned and tightened muscles.
Lie face down on your yoga mat in preparation for Locust pose. Locust is a posture that traditionally is held for a period of time; and while that will give your glutes a nice little isometric workout, if you add an element of dynamic movement, you've got a well-rounded exercise to tighten your butt. Lay your forehead on the mat and stretch your arms along your sides, with your palms facing up. On an exhalation, simultaneously lift your head, chest, legs and arms off the floor. Inhale and return to the starting position. Repeat the whole maneuver several times and then, on your final lift, hold for three to five breaths before you release back to the mat.
Stand up on your yoga mat for another butt-tightening exercise. Warrior I is a yoga pose that can be modified to dynamically strengthen and tighten your glutes. From a standing position, step your feet 3 feet apart and turn your left foot in 45 to 60 degrees and your right foot out 90 degrees. Turn your upper torso to the right and square your hips toward your right foot. Raise your arms, parallel to each other, over your head. Exhale and bend your right knee. Inhale and straighten your right leg. Repeat slowly, several times and then hold your bent knee posture one final time for up to one minute.
Kneel on all fours on a rug or exercise mat. Breathe deeply and evenly throughout the exercise. Lift your left knee off the floor and straighten the leg. Your left leg should be parallel to the floor. Lift your right hand off the floor and straighten your right arm until it is parallel to the floor. Hold for two seconds and then return to the starting position. Repeat the maneuver with your right leg and left arm. Continue slowly alternating sides until you become fatigued. Work your way up to performing 15 to 20 repetitions per side.
Stand with your feet together. Bend your knees and place your hands or fingertips on the floor slightly in front of and to the outsides of your feet. While keeping your left foot stationary, take a large step back with your right foot and straighten your right leg. Immediately snap your right leg back to the bent knee starting position and then send your left leg back. Continue on at a fast pace, alternating legs. Complete five on each side and work your way up to 15 per side over time.
Stand with your feet about 1 foot apart and parallel to each other. Raise your right knee high toward your chest. Keep your hips square to the front as you first cross the right knee over your body to the left and then open it all the way toward the right. Return to the starting position and repeat on the left. Do five to 10 reps on each side.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Begin rocking back on your heels while bending your knees as if you were going to sit down. Keep lowering until you can feel your heels wanting to come off the floor. At that moment, push into the floor with your feet and jump into the air. Land softly on your midfoot and immediately start bending your knees to begin the maneuver again. Complete as many as you can before you become fatigued.
- YogaJournal.com: Glute Camp
- Yoga Journal: Thigh Master
- American Council on Exercise: Bird-dog
- Yoga Now; Rodney Yee and Mariel Hemingway; DVD
- American Council on Exercise: Standing Gate Openers
- American Council on Exercise: Squat Jump
- Contract or tighten your abs during each of these exercises for your inner thighs and glutes. Not only will your abs get their own mini workout, but this maneuver will help you perform these exercises more effectively by stabilizing your core.
Linda Kaban is a certified yoga teacher and professional life coach who specializes in helping people achieve their fitness goals. With a bachelor's degree in the humanities, Kaban has been writing since 1998 and has been published in YOGALife magazine along with other healthy living publications.