You can set the tone

January 4, 2016

BarreAmped creator Suzanne Bowen demonstrates the Wide 2nd Position.

If youíre like most of us, you want tighter thighs in 2016. This dance-inspired move by BarreAmped creator Suzanne Bowen will do the trick.


Tightens and tones the thighs.


Start with a quick warm-up. A few minutes of walking or jogging will do. Grab onto a countertop ó or chair that wonít slide away from you ó for support. Begin by placing feet a little more than hip distance apart, at a 45-degree angle or so from the body. Fight to keep chest and head high as you begin to "pulse" ó dropping your bottom and raising back up to the starting position, going only as deep as comfortable. Protect your knees by making sure they do not travel out beyond your toes, so reposition your feet as necessary.

"Press up through your heels so you really feel this in your thighs," she says.

Donít worry if you canít go very low, Bowen says. Youíll gain a greater range of motion over time. When you get a little stronger, you can widen the feet even more and drop lower.

The advanced version of this move? Perform the move while standing on the balls of your feet, pictured below right. (You might need to reposition your feet to bring them closer to the body, to give you a sturdier foundation.)

"Youíll really feel your [thigh] muscles burning and shaking in this exercise."


Perform this exercise for one to three minutes a couple of days of week. Rest a day or two between sessions.



McClatchy-Tribune Information Services