Exercises for Strong, Sculpted Legs

Photo Credit: Exey Panteleev CC-BY-2.0
Regular exercise, like walking and bicycling, can help keep your legs strong and toned. Exercise helps reduce the chance of diseases like osteoartiritis, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Calf raises and leg lifts focus on the lower leg by stretching and strengthening the muscles on the back of your leg below the knee. Strong leg muscles stabilize and protect your knee and ankle joints, which reduces the likelihood of injury and joint pain. Add some calf exercises to your regular exercise routine for strong lower legs. 
Front leg lifts target the muscles that support and stabilize the knee joint. Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out. Lean back on your forearms in a reclining position. Bend your left knee and plant your left foot flat on the floor. Keep your right leg straight with your toes pointed toward the ceiling. Slowly lift your right leg off the floor toward the ceiling. Lift until your leg is about 6 inches off the floor. Hold the lift for 5 seconds and then lower your leg back to the floor. Repeat 10 times with each leg. 
Calf raises strengthen the long muscle on the back of your leg and strengthen the ankle joint. Stand on the balls of your feet on the edge of a stair step or a step-up exercise stool. Allow your heels to hang off the back of the stair. Hold onto the wall or stair rail for support to maintain your balance if necessary. Allow both heels to drop slightly below the level of the stair or stool. Hold the stretch for 2 seconds and then push your body up on the balls of your feet until your heels are above the level of the step. Hold of 2 seconds and return to the start position. Repeat 10 raises, up and then down. 

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About Robin R.
I’m an AFPA certified personal trainer & nutrition consultant, NASM certified corrective exercise specialist, NASM certified youth exercise specialist, online fitness coach and freelance writer specializing in health and fitness. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health. I specialize in weight loss, functional strength training, total body toning, aerobic conditioning, plyometric training, nutrition planning, and home-based boot camp style workouts for women. My goal is to make every personal training session fun and effective for my clients. My services include both in-home personal training and online fitness coaching.

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