Most women would agree that a higher backside and slimmer legs would be ideal. Luckily, squats can do just thatand then some.
"Squats play a key role in developing both strength and stability in the lower half of the body," says Kate Brown, ISSA CFT for DailyBurn.com. "By performing squats regularly, you'll not only tone your glutes, hamstrings, quads, hips, and calves, but you'll also be performing a functional exercise that will help keep you balanced and confident in this season's hottest stacked heels." Brown also adds that the exercise helps lubricate joints like your knees, hip flexors, and ankles, making the exercise a good way to relive pain caused by joint stiffness.
Just like last week's Move of the Week: Push-Ups, you can do squats in the comfort of your own home, and no additional equipment is necessary. "There are hundreds of variations of squats to suit every fitness level," says Brown. "The basic squat utilizes your own body weight as resistance. But when you're starting out, go slow so until you get the form down."
We'll walk you through how to do this exercise below. Once you are comfortable with the proper technique, you can go faster to get your heart rate up and blast more calories.
Stand with your feet flat on the ground, shoulder-width apart.
Slightly contract your abs to stabilize your core.
Hang your arms to your sides.
As if you were sitting back into a chair, lower your body by bending at your knees and hips, forcing your butt out behind you.
Raise your arms until they become parallel with the floor. If you need more stability, clasp together them out in front of you.
Do not allow your knees to extend past your toes. If this occurs, bend more at your hips.
Pause when your thighs become parallel with the floor.
Push through your heels and straighten your knees while pushing forward with your hips.
Lower your arms back to your sides.
Return to starting position.
Complete as many reps as you can in 60 seconds. Do three sets, taking a 30-second break between each. Do this exercise three times a week, and be sure to rest your legs for 24 hours between sessions.
Track your fitness goals with DailyBurn's free iPhone app Calorie, Workout, and Fitness Companion.