If you've ever done leg lifts in the hopes of getting rid of fat around the hips and thighs, you've already figured out (the hard way) that it doesn't work...
If you've ever done leg lifts in the hopes of getting rid of fat around the hips and thighs, you've already figured out (the hard way) that it doesn't work...All part of the spot reduction myth many of us still fall victim to. That said, leg lefts are still important for strengthening the glutes, particularly the gluteus medius and minimus, and providing support and stability to the lower body.
Most of us have done plenty of legs lifts while lying on the floor, but I like doing these on an exercise ball even more. The added instability forces the core to work harder to keep your body in position. The angle of the movement adds an intensity that you often don't get when you're lying down.
To make this even more of a total body exercise, do a set of one-armed lateral raises while you're resting between sets. This is a great way to save time and work both the outer thigh and the shoulders.
Do it right: Lie with your right side supported on the ball, right arm resting on the ball for added stability. The right leg is bent with the knee down on the floor and the left leg is straight, foot flexed. Hold a weight on the upper part of the left thigh for intensity if needed and lift the left leg straight up a few inches off the floor. The movement is small, so avoid lifting the leg too high. Keep the hip, knee, ankle and heel in alignment and facing forward. Lower and repeat for 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps and then switch sides.