March Mat-ness Challenge Day 22

Side Leg Lift Series

This is a fun group of exercises.  There are 5 exercises that you will perform lying on your side before switching to the other side.  These are great for inner thigh and core work.

Your starting position is lying on your side with your legs together and straight in a long line.  Your bottom foot can be flexed a little to help you balance on your side.  Your bottom arm will also be straight with your palm down and you will rest your head on it.  Top arm will be in front of you with finger tips on the mat for stability.  Pull up the abdominal muscles to engage them for stability.

  1. The first exercise you will inhale and lift your top leg with pointed toes.  On your exhale, flex your foot and squeeze your leg down to the other leg. Really use your inner thighs here to squeeze the legs together.  Perform 5-10 repetitions.
  2. The second exercise is leg circles.  Start by inhaling and lifting your top leg to about hip height.  Then, exhale and circle the top leg and finish the circle with your inhale.  These circles are not big!  You want to maintain stability in your torso.  Perform 5-10 circles in each direction on each leg.
  3. The third exercise is called Staggered Legs.  On your inhale, lift your top leg to hip height.  On your exhale, squeeze the bottom leg up to meet the top leg.  Then, lower both legs together.  Perform 5-10 repetitions on each side.
  4. The fourth exercise is lifting both legs together.  Before you move, inhale.  On your exhale, keep the legs squeezing together and lift them off the mat.  Inhale and lower the legs.  Perform 5-10 repetitions on each side.
  5. The last exercise is the same as the fourth exercise except you will also try to lift your upper body off the mat, making a banana shape with your body.  Begin by taking a breath in.  On your exhale, keep your legs squeezing together and lift them off the mat as you lift the upper body off the mat.  The top arm is reaching down the side of your legs and the bottom arm is sliding palm down along the mat.  On your next inhale, lower your body to the mat.  Perform 5-10 repetitions on each side.

Usually you would perform all five exercises on one side and then switch to the other side.

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