HIPS DON’T LIE! Says Shakira, and me too! Have any fat around your hips? Or, want wider hips like Kim K? Okay I can’t give you the solution to look like Kim K, but there are 3 main exercises I do on a daily basis. These will burn that stubborn fat and build lean muscle, in turn filling out those lovely hip dips.
The first movement is a lying leg raise. Start by laying on one side, making sure you are directly on your hip bone. You should be able to draw a straight line from your shoulder to your hip all the way down to your ankle. If you are somewhat twisted, you will be burning different muscles in the booty – not a bad thing but not what the goal is here. I will get to booty workouts eventually don’t worry.
With your legs stacked on top of one another, slowly lift the top leg up to the sky. Raise until you feel a burn in that stubborn hip area I mentioned earlier. If you do not feel the burn or want to increase the intensity, flex your foot towards the outside (up) like I am in the picture. By doing this your entire leg will be flexed at all times in turn increasing the work the hip has to do. If you place your hand on your hip you can actually feel your hip squeezing and contracting. Complete 10 reps on each side for 2 sets.
The second movement is one I know you all have most likely done at some point in your life – a simple lunge. Start by standing tall with your feet hips width apart. With one leg take a large step forward. It might take a couple tries to get the distance correct. If you take too small of a step your knee will be past your toes, and your shin will create an angle less than 90 degrees. If you take too big of a step, your knee will be way behind your toes, and your shin will create an angle much larger than 90 degrees.
Ideally, with a perfect lunge, you will create a 90-degree angle with your thigh and shin. Your forward knee should never be over your toes, and your back knee should be hovering a few inches off the ground. As for your upper body you should be a straight line as well. Make sure you are not leaning backward putting extra stress on your core or leaning forward putting extra stress on the knee joints. After about a second pause use your strength to push yourself back to standing position. Switch legs and follow the same instructions on your other side. Complete 20 total reps for 2 sets.
The last movement is one of my favorites as it combines for a hip AND booty workout. I call them donkey kicks, but people have many different names for them. Start by getting on your hands and knees. Your arms should be directly below your shoulders. A common mistake is to put your hands too far forward. By doing this you are using your upper body to stabilize instead of your core. This will feel easier as you don’t have to engage your core muscles, but over time this puts a lot of stress on your shoulders and can lead to nagging injuries. No one wants that!
Your knees should be directly below your hips as if you could draw a straight line as shown in my picture. With one leg slowly swing backwards and begin to extend fully straight. Raise your leg as high as you need to in order to feel a burn. As I mentioned earlier is a dual movement, and you will feel a burn in your glutes as well as your hip. It is VERY important that you only go as high as your body allows you too while keeping the rest of your body still. This is a difficult movement, and your upper body is going to want to move to compensate. Do NOT let this happen, even if it means you can’t lift your leg super high. Everyone’s bodies are different, so stay in tune with what your body wants and make sure to stay strong throughout the pose. Pause for a second at the top then slowly bring your leg back down to the starting position. Complete 10 reps on one side, then switch legs. Try and complete 2 sets, but if this movement is difficult for you just start with 1! You can always build your way up – no reason to go crazy.