Mind & Body

3 ways to tone your legs

The body transformer for supermodels and fashion editors, former prima ballerina and Ballet Beautiful founder MARY HELEN BOWERS shares her easy-to-follow exercises for strengthening and shaping your legs


There are good legs and then there are great legs, with lasting, lean definition. How to get it? All it requires are some simple yet strategic changes to your workout. Mary Helen Bowers – founder of the A-list-loved workout sensation Ballet Beautiful – is responsible for defining and finessing some of the world's most famous (and most coveted) limbs. These are the three moves she relies on to contour legs, fast.

The multitasker: Grand plié

This is the one move that targets several areas – not only do these deep ballet pliés help to tighten and tone your bottom and thighs, they are great at sculpting hard-to-target areas such as the inner thighs and calves.

The metabolism booster: Arabesque lunge

This exercise is super-effective for your entire lower body, as it will work your buttocks and the backs of the outer thighs as well as engaging your hamstrings. Strengthening these large muscle groups can also speed up your metabolism.

The all-rounder: One-legged bridge

While this move is excellent for overall leg tone, it’s also great for conditioning the buttocks, calves and backs of the thighs, as well as strengthening the core and spine, all of which helps to achieve that perfect ballet dancer’s posture.


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