Leg lifts, lying

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What it’s good for Strengthens the muscles at the back of your legs and up into your but­tocks. Everyday bene­fits include:

  • Makes it easier to walk prop­erly
  • Takes strain off your lower back, redu­cing back pain
  • You can stand for longer without leg or back ache
  • Helps your sense of sta­bil­ity and bal­ance con­trol when walk­ing or run­ning
  • Reduces the effort of climb­ing stairs
  • Helps with sit­ting down and get­ting up
How often to do it Daily or
Three times a week (if using ankle weight, see below)
Equipment you’ll need A mat, rug, car­pet, towel or any­thing else you can lie on com­fort­ably on the floor­Ankle weight (optional, see below)

Lying face down, hands to forehead, lifting one leg to strengthen rear-leg muscles

  • Lie face down, head rest­ing on the backs of your hands, elbows out at your sides
  • Gently pull in your lower abs, then squeeze your but­tock muscle tightly on one leg and lift that leg off the ground
  • As you lift, take care not to tip your body over to the other side, as that’s cheat­ing
  • Hold your leg briefly in the air, then lower
  • Now do the same with the other leg.

Both legs = 1 repeat. Aim for 12 repeats

♦ As you get bet­ter at doing this, try to relax your arms and shoulders so that they are not giv­ing you any extra help at all !

Varying the exer­cise for more chal­lenge

Once you can do 12 leg lifts, you need to make the exer­cise a bit harder to con­tinue strength­en­ing your muscles. Firstly, add a second set of 12 daily. Then you could add an ankle weight, start­ing with the smal­lest weight (eg 0.5kg).

Note: once you start work­ing with leg weights, you will need to leave a day’s rest between exer­cise ses­sions, so you’ll be aim­ing to do this exer­cise about three times a week, rather than every day.

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