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7 Lower-Body Exercises the Rockettes Do for Strong, Lean Legs

The Radio City Rockettes stun their audience when they get in formation (sorry for the Queen Bey pun, but it's fitting) and high-kick with incredible synchronization. You can catch them during the holidays for the classic Christmas Spectacular or over the summer when they perform in the New York Spectacular. Both shows light up the stage with amazing costumes and set designs, but there's one thing you won't be able to take your eyes off of—those legs!

You don't need to be a Rockette to show off some seriously strong and flexible stems. We got Rockette Natalie Reid, who's also an instructor for Body by Simone, to demo a few secret moves designed by the dancers' trainer Elaine Winslow-Redmond, M.S., A.T.C., that she and the other ladies do to get ready to go on stage. As for you? Well, you'll just love the way you look in feel in those summer short-shorts.

Squat Knee Hugs

A. Begin with feet together, step out to the side with left foot and bend into a half squat.
B. Bend and lift right knee, clasping shin, pulling leg to chest.
C. Release leg and return to half squat position, and bend and lift opposite leg. Return to standing. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Lunge Knee-Up and Step

A. Step forward into a lunge with right leg, keeping chest open and head up.
B. Push up from heel and hips and lift back knee up, and take a step forward.
C. Step back to starting "line." Perform on opposite side. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Single Lunge Drag

A. Begin with feet together. Step out to the side with right leg and perform a side lunge.
B. Push off with right heel and pivot to perform side lunge on left.
C. Push with heel and drag left leg in to meet right.
Perform on opposite side. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Crossover Lunge

A. Stand upright with feet together. Step forward and across your body into deep lunge.
B. Return to starting position, then alternate sides crossing left leg. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Squat Swing

A. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and hold the ends of a 5-10 lb dumbbell in both hands.
B. Squat down as if you are sitting in a chair, swinging dumbbell towards your heel, chest lifted and abs tight.
C. Come to standing as you swing dumbbell straight up and out to about eye-level. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Hamstring Curl to Bridge

A. Begin lying on the ground with knees bent slightly, feet resting on a stability ball. Push up into a bridge position.
B. Extend both legs out long with butt still lifted. Slowly lower back to floor. That's one rep.

Reps: 10-15
Sets: 2

Supine Ball Curl

A. Begin lying on floor with legs in tabletop position (legs lifted, knees bent at 90-degree angle). Hold a stability ball between your ankles.
B. Extend legs straight up and then bend back to tabletop. That's one rep.

Reps: 40
Sets: 2

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