Squat Thrusts to Tone Thighs

Squat thrusts can help tone your thighs.
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If you want to tone your upper legs, make squat thrusts or burpees part of your workout routine and kiss flabby thighs goodbye. If you think squat thrusts seem challenging, don't worry -- they can be modified to meet your fitness level. This calisthenic exercise combines isometrics and plyometrics for optimal results; when done rapidly, you can also get a cardiovascular benefit. In addition to sculpting your legs, the exercise also works your chest, abdominals and arms for a full-body workout that delivers.

Step 1

Stand upright with your arms extended along your sides, spread your feet shoulder-width apart and point your toes forward or slightly outward.

Step 2

Bend your knees, push your tush back and lower your hips into a squat. Imagine you're sitting down on a chair. For optimal toning and activation of your quadriceps and hamstrings, try to lower down until your thighs are parallel to the floor.

Step 3

Place your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width on the floor and jump or walk your feet back. You should now be in a plank position with your tummy sucked in to support your back, your toes flexed and tucked under, and your tush and leg muscles contracted. Your body should form a straight line from your head to your feet.

Step 4

Bend your elbows until your upper arms are parallel to the floor and push yourself back up to the plank position. Skip this step if you're new to squat thrusts and proceed with the next step instead.

Step 5

Jump your feet back under your hips to return to a squatting position and immediately explode upward -- push through your feet to extend legs and jump as high as you can for optimal leg-muscle engagement. Land on the front of your feet with your knees slightly bent to minimize the impact. Imagine you're light as a feather when landing and immediately go into the next repetition.

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