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Home Women Female Fitness 8 Effective Thigh Exercises for Women

8 Effective Thigh Exercises for Women

8 Effective Thigh Exercises for Women


Women often find that they need to give a great deal of attention to thigh exercises due to these areas storing fat, second only to the waist. This is especially true around the holidays when all those extra goodies go “straight to the thighs”. 

To help battle the bulge, let’s take a look at 8 of the most effective thigh exercises for women. If you make these exercises into a circuit training program by doing one right after the other with minimal breaks between (no more than 30 seconds between sets and 90 seconds between exercises) and perform it 2-3 times a week, you will soon have stronger and thinner thighs. Also, you can arrange these exercises into any order for your own personalized thigh workout.




Dumbbell Lunge

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and holding a dumbbell in each hand
  • Lunge forward with one leg and land with that leg creating a 90° angle. The back leg should bend until the knee is almost touching the floor.
  • During the exercise, keep your back and arms straight and maintain your body weight evenly distributed.
  • Return to the starting position and either complete a set of 10-12 repetitions with the same leg before switching, or switch from one leg to the other until you complete 3 sets with each leg.




Dumbbell Squat

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and holding dumbbells down and in front of you.
  • Squat down and place the dumbbells on the floor. Be sure to use your legs and keep your back straight to avoid lower back injury.
  • Stand back up and squat again, this time picking up the dumbbells.
  • Repeat by alternating the leaving and retrieving of the dumbbells for 3 sets of 10-12 reps.




Toe Squat and Reach

  • Stand with your feet together and bend your knees until you are in a half squat (like you’re sitting in a chair). Hold your knees tightly together and hold a dumbbell with both hands straight over your head.
  • Rise up onto the balls of your feet and lower your butt down and back up to the half-squat position. Focus on maintaining your balance.
  • Complete 3 sets of 10-12 reps.




Pile Squat

  • Stand with your feet spread apart in a stance wider than shoulder width. Point your toes outward and hold your arms straight out in front of you. Keep your back straight.
  • Squat down as far as possible while contracting your glutes. Do not allow your knees to extend past your toes. 
  • Hold this position for a full minute. After holding steady for about 45 seconds, bounce slightly for the remaining 15 seconds.
  • Beginners performing the pile may find one repetition to be enough. However, as you can, add other repetitions.




Squat with Exercise Ball

  • Place an exercise ball against the wall and lean against it with the curve of your back, standing with feet apart shoulder width.
  • Squat down until you are in a sitting position and hold for several seconds.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat for 3 sets of 10-12 reps.




Plyometric Squat

  • Stand with  your feet spread apart to about shoulder width and your arms bent at a 90° angle, hands in front of you.
  • Squat down until your legs form a 90° angle.
  • Jump up with exploding force, land as softly as you can and immediately return to a squat position.
  • Repeat for 3 sets of 10-12 reps.




Inner and Outer Thigh Kicks

  • Stand facing the back of a chair which you’ll use for balance. Keep your back straight and your shoulder blades pressed back.
  • Rise up onto the balls of your feet. 
  • Lift your right foot, rotate it outward and flex your toes upward. Move your right foot across your left leg. 
  • With force, kick your leg out to the right as far as you can, making sure to keep your leg straight and your toes flexed up and foot turned outward.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat for 10 reps. Switch legs and do another set. Continue with this pattern until you 3 sets of 10 with each leg.




Laying Leg Circles

  • Lay on an exercise mat, facing the ceiling with your arms at your sides, palms facing down.
  • Lift one leg into the air with your toes pointed straight up. Keep your hips still and remaining on the floor throughout the exercise.
  • Move your leg in a circular motion, drawing a circle on the ceiling.
  • Complete a set of 8-10 reps, switch legs and complete another set. Perform 3 sets with each leg.

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