You can tone flabby thighs at home or the gym with several targeted exercises. While thigh exercises can strengthen and sculpt your muscles, they won't spot-reduce fat, which must be burned off with aerobic exercises such as power walking or swimming. Use a set of dumbbells and a pair of 3- to 5-pound ankle weights.
Grand Plie Squats
Plie squats give ballerinas their toned and defined thigh muscles. To perform this exercise, hold one dumbbell in each hand, placing them at the top of your thighs. Stand up tall, with your legs wide and your knees and feet turned out. Squeeze your buttocks and tilt your pelvis. Slowly lower your butt until your thighs are parallel to the floor or form a 90-degree angle to your shins. Continue to squeeze your upper thighs and glutes, and return to the starting position without locking your knees. Perform two sets of 15 to 20 repetitions with a one-minute rest between sets.
Triple Dip Walking Lunges
Walking lunges target your thigh and gluteus muscles. Hold one dumbbell in each hand, arms hanging by your sides. Stand at the end of a long, clear path with your feet shoulder-width apart and your upper body straight. Lunge with your right leg until your front and back knees are bent at 90-degree angles. Your front knee should be aligned with your second toe and your back heel lifted off the floor. At the lowest part of the lunge, perform three deep isometric contractions of your buttocks and thigh muscles. Stand and bring your feet together. Lunge forward with your left leg and repeat the movement. To perform your lunges to music, the count is lunge right, 2, 3 and close, lunge left, 2, 3 and close. Try for two to three consecutive reps with both legs.
Roller Blade the Flab Away
Inline skating targets your upper thigh muscles, burns about 285 calories in 30 minutes and uses all of your thigh muscles. If you're a first-time skater, try skating on the grass or a carpet before you hit the pavement. To protect yourself from injury, wear elbow, knee and wrist pads as well as a helmet.
Lying "V" Criss-Cross Exercise
The lying V exercise can target your thighs while you're watching television or reading a book. Put ankle weights on and lie on your back. Start with your legs together, extended straight up toward the ceiling and aligned with your hips. Slowly open your legs to a wide V-shaped position, keeping your feet flexed and your knees as straight as possible. Bring the legs back together, cross your right ankle in front of your left and then return to the V position. Repeat the movements, but cross your left ankle in front of your right. Continue the pattern for 20 to 25 repetitions, rest for 30 to 60 seconds and perform a second set.
- Ace Fitness: Spot Reduction Myth
- Ace Fitness: Knee Movement and Proper Form During Lunge Exercises
- "Thin Thighs in Thirty Days"; Wendy Druhm