Sometimes the simplest tasks seem the hardest no matter how much work you put into it. Is it possible your work is being performed incorrectly? Could that explain the lack of results? Everyone is well aware of your regular cable exercises for inner and outer thigh training. Everyone has tried them at one time or another. The downfall is that 80% of the time we are seeing people doing it incorrectly with ballistic movement, lacking stability and totally missing the point! Rushing your training will literally get you nowhere.
Key things you should remember while doing these exercises is to keep your back straight by bringing shoulders back and chest out. Keep your hips squared or facing the same direction as your head. Concentrate on the muscle group doing the work so move slowly with control. If you don’t do this you won’t get results. These muscles need high rep, light weight, small movements done almost like pulses but not done at the pulse rate, instead done very slowly.
Looking carefully at the next photos you will see:
- Strict form
- Spotting using the machines handles
- Slow controlled movements
- NO BOUNCING
- NO other part of the body is moving
Cable thigh exercises in the gym are just one of your many choices. Those of you with bands can train at home very conveniently by mimicking the above motions and anchoring your band. There is circular tubing also available for reasonable costs.
Another choice at the gym is your inner and outer thigh machine usually made for the gals and normally in the ladies section. This machine does not have a gluteal component on it so you have to go over to your multi hip machine. This one is s sometimes used for inner and outer thigh and additionally for hip flexors.
When using this machine for butt and thigh shaping you want to push the leg back starting with the knees inline, meanwhile keeping your pelvis neutral to avoid arching the back and losing the work from the glutes. The handles are very useful to keep you in form, and don’t forget to adjust the height of the hamstring pad so that you can bend the working leg at 90 degrees preventing your hamstrings from taking over all the work. You can alternate sides by easily adjusting the machine.
Another simple way to work on your thighs at home, at work, at travel or anywhere, is to use a couple of light dumbbells or ankle weights for resistance. Dumbbells used as in the photos below are much less aggressive on the joints than weights at the ankles, but you can hold your ankle weights on your thighs for a great workout yet still practicing injury prevention.
Ironically, I am discussing the warm up last but it should be done first! Before you do these exercises there is a great way to warm up your legs and get them prepared for the work ahead. Getting the blood flowing is a wonderful way to loosen up so that you can stretch comfortably before your thigh workout. This can be done at home or in a hotel room with a phone book. The body bar is not needed, but if you have access to one it will intensify the warm up.
All you have to do is step up then extend your leg back with emphasis on the glutes. Repeat for each side for a 5 minute time frame. Finish with an inner and outer thigh stretch to begin your workout!
- Sets: 3-5 (2 for beginners)
- Reps: 15-30 slow and controlled
- Rest: average 2 minutes between sets (can stretch between sets)
- Times per week: 2-3
- Intensity: light to none