Inner and Outer Thigh Exercises – 9 Workouts for Toned Legs
Looking for some exercise variations other than squats and lunges to work your inner and outer thighs?
These 9 thighs trimming and sculpting exercises will work the inner and outer thighs in ways you didn’t think were possible. Along with healthy eating and cardio workouts, these moves will get you there in no time.
You can do most of the moves using only your body weight but be sure to engage the legs, glutes, and abs to create your own resistance.
While the other exercises require the use of a towel and mini resistance band loop! we use this mini-band set here from our shop) for the outer thigh moves.
Toning the inner and outer thighs will not only help you rock your miniskirts and skinny jeans with confidence, but they will also make your knees and hips stronger.
The mini resistance band set provides various levels of resistance for your fitness level.
Pick a few moves or try them all to sculpt your inner & outer thighs. And don’t miss out sample inner and outer thigh workout suggested at the very end.
Ready, set and go.
What you need to do these exercises and the workout: Mini-band, yoga block (folded towel), oval slide.
Your Inner Thighs
Your Inner thigh consists of a group of muscles called the adductor. They are also called the groin muscles.
According to BreakingMuscles.com, these hip adductor muscles make up 22.5% of the total mass of your lower body. They consist of six muscles: the pectineus, adductor Brevis, adductor longus, adductor Magnus, and gracilis muscle (1).
The primary function of these muscles is to pull the legs together inward. Additionally, adductor muscles aid with the movements of the joint of the hips.
The adductors (inner thigh) also work with the abductors (outer thigh) to provide side-to-side stabilization of the pelvis.
As a whole, working the adductors is important for overall hip and knee stability and injury prevention.
These inner thigh exercises will help strengthen the adductor muscles as well as tone and slim down the inner thighs. Aim for 12 to 15 reps for 2 to 3 sets per exercise.
1. Side Lunge – Valslide
Stand with your left foot on a Valslide.
Slide your foot to the side while sitting into a squat (bend your knee at 90 degrees). Keep your left leg straight and your weight on your right heel. Bring your left foot back to the standing position. Return and repeat.
Lie on your left side and set up in a side plank, with your legs straight and your weight resting on your left forearm. Align your body so it forms a straight line from your head to your ankles and put your right hand on your hip.
Tighten your abs and lift your left leg and bend that knee, bringing your foot next to the inside of your right knee. Your body weight is now resting on your left forearm and the inside edge of your right foot. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds, then repeat on the other side.
3. Glute Bridge Knee Squeeze
Lie flat on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place a rolled-up towel between your knees and hold it there as you perform the movement.
Raise your hips so that your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. Don’t allow the towel to slip. Pause, then lower your hips toward the floor. Do 12 to 15 reps.
4. Valslide Leg Curl – Out & In
Lie on your back with your knees bent, and your heels on a pair of Valslides. Lift your hips so your body forms a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
Keeping your core tight, extend your legs out the sides at the same time and then back together without allowing your hips to drop. Pause, and then return using your glutes and hamstrings, pull your heels back toward your body until you return back to the starting position. do 10 to 12 reps.
Outer Thigh – Abductor
The hip abductor muscles are a group of four muscles located in your buttocks and the side the hip.
They are gluteus maximus, gluteus Medius, gluteus Minimus, and tensor Fascia Lata.
As the name has it, the abductor’s primary function is to abduct or open your thighs/legs out to the side.
It’s also abductors that stabilize your pelvis when you walk or stand on one foot.
In everyday life, your hip abductor muscles help you walk, run, play sports, dance, get in and out of a car and get on and off of a bicycle. Abductor muscle exercises help coordinate movements, improve functional fitness, enhance core stability and prevent injuries.
Wrap the mini resistance band around both legs just above your knees. Lie on your side with your hips and knees bent 45 degrees. Keep your legs stacked and feet in contact with each other.
Contract your abs as you raise your upper knee as high as you can without moving your pelvis. Don’t allow your lower leg to move off the floor. Pause, then return to the starting position. Repeat for the prescribed number of repetitions.
6. Fire Hydrant—Mini-Band
Place the mini band just above your knees then get down on all fours. Make sure your back is flat and your head and spine are neutral. Pull your shoulders downwards away from your ears and tighten your core muscles.
Lift one leg up and to the side, keeping your knee bent at 90 degrees and lifting to hip level. Keep your weight distributed evenly between your hands and knees. Pause at the top, then slowly lower to return to the start position, resisting the pull of the band as you return. Continue for the prescribed number of repetitions. Switch sides and repeat.
7. Side Band Walk—Mini-Band
Loop the mini band around your ankles, and stand in a quarter squat position with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Step your right foot to the right, then follow it with your left, feeling resistance from the band. Complete a few steps to the right, and then complete a few to the left.
8. Wall Sit
Stand with your head and back against a wall. Position your feet shoulder-width apart, about 18 inches from the wall, and keep your arms at your sides or out in front of you.
Slide your back down against the wall to lower your body into a squat position until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold, rest and repeat
9. Half Squat
Stand on top of a bench or box, about 12 inches high. Allow your right left to hang off the bench, and extend your arms in front of you for balance.
Bend your right knee, and lower your hips until your left heel lightly touches the ground. Press into your right heel, and drive upward to return to the starting position and repeat.
Inner & Outer Thigh Workout
* Perform each exercise for 12 to 15 repetitions. Complete 2 to 3 sets. Rest as needed after each set.
Working the inner and outer thighs will not only get your legs leaner and toner, but they will be stronger and less prone to injuries. The inner and outer muscles help stabilize and keep your hips and knees healthy.
If you’re a runner, doing these exercises particularly will help to make you run faster and stronger.