Today’s Workout column: Side kick builds strength in hips and legs
Fitness can be fun and so can the exercises. That being said, it obviously cannot be fun all the time (after all, it is “working” out), but you can definitely throw in some interesting moves to break up the monotony.
For today’s move, table top with a side kick, you need is a flat surface and a yoga mat. This table top movement will be working multiple areas of your lower body: glutes, quads, hamstrings, and inner and outer thighs. This side kick movement will also be toning your midsection.
Begin this exercise by positioning on the floor on all fours. Place your hands directly underneath your shoulders, and position both knees underneath your hips. Focus on squaring up your body and tightening your midsection by pressing your navel to the sky.
Now, slightly shift your weight to one knee, lifting your free leg up and out to your side. Focus on keeping your hips and body in alignment, but lifting your bent knee as level to your hips as possible.
Once your lifted leg is in your highest and strongest position, you are ready to start kicking!
To execute this, focus on pushing through your shoelaces and guiding your kicking leg straight out to the side. Once you reach your fullest extension with your kick, return it back to a bent position, but still keep it lifted out to the side.
Continue this out and in kicking for at least eight to 10 times. Then replace your lifted leg back to the ground and take a small break. Shift your weight, and proceed into kicking in the opposite leg.
Continue this motion on each side at least three to five sets. If you need intensity, you can add small ankle weights. And if you experience any discomfort, simply lower your kicking leg, or reduce the number of kicks.
This table top side kick is excellent to build strength in your hips and legs. It is great to add into any lower body routine.
Marlo Alleva, an instructor at Gold’s Gym and group fitness coordinator at Fontaine-Gills YMCA in Lakeland, Florida, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.