Most people have the same reaction to leg day as they do daylight saving time or doing the dishes. Which is: “Ugh!” I’ll tell you a secret, though: Lower body workouts don’t have to include monotonous reps of moves you’ve done a hundred times before. Marnie Alton, the founder of M/Body and Well+Good’s trainer of the month, proves that leg day can be a dance party, with this week’s lower body barre workout.
On this week’s webisode of the series, Alton guides you through a 15-minute workout that’s basically barre disguised as a dance party. You’ll need zero equipment to get going, and you can choose either a low or high-impact option for moves throughout the sequence. By the end, the teeny-tiniest muscles in your legs and glutes will be screaming in the most satisfying way. Ready to give it a shot?
Your 15-minute lower body barre workout
1. Shakeouts: Jump from one side of your mat to the other with bent knees, landing on your toes, and twisting your hips to the opposite side of the mat. At the same time, bend your elbows and shake those hands out.
2. Shakeout around the worlds: Without changing the side-to-side movement of your legs, sweep your arms up and over your head like you’re doing a sun salutation. Draw great, big circles with your arms to get into your shoulders and side body.
3. Run in place: Hinge slightly at your hips and run in place, making sure to stay on your toes. Since we’re focusing on your lower body this week, Alton says you can bend into those knees even more than usual to really say, “Hello!” to your glutes.
4. Wide modified sumo squats: Inch your feet out wide, as if you were going to fold into a wide-leg straddle. Instead, bend your knees and use your abs to bring your upper body parallel to the floor. Straighten and come back to standing. Unlike normal squats, you don’t want your spine to be upright when you’re doing these babies.
5. Toe taps: Come to standing and bend both knees. Bring your torso close to parallel to the floor and tap your left toe out to the left while extending your arms simultaneously. Bring the toe back to the center while your hands meet at your chest. Try not to move your right side at all as you work through rep after rep. Repeat on the opposite side.
6. Toe step backs: Without changing the right side of your body at all, step the left foot back into a semi-lunge (you don’t need to bend the front knee quite as much as you would normally). Extend your arms straight forward. Spring the left foot back up to meet the right as you draw your elbows to your side. Move through the reps, then get your left side.
For the rest of the moves, watch the full video.
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