Basic lunges aren’t bad for your butt and thighs, they’re just inherently boring — and they only work your backside from one angle.

To stop yourself from falling asleep during your workouts (the worst way to tone your butt and thighs), sprinkle in some variations from certified fitness trainer and Gymnetics co-founder Lana Ector

 

1. Reverse Lunge

How to do it: Stand up straight with both feet together. With your left foot, take one large step backward. Bend both knees about 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders over your hips and front knee behind your front toes. Press into your front heel, and squeeze your butt and thighs to return to starting position. Repeat on the opposite side and continue to alternate.

2. Side Lunge

How to do it: Stand up straight with both feet together. Keeping both feet facing forward, take a large step to the left with your left foot. Bend both knees to sit your hips back, keeping the knees behind the toes. Press into your heels to come back to center, then repeat on the opposite side.

3. Around-the-Clock Lunges

How to do it: Stand up straight with both feet together. Take a large step forward with your left foot and bend both knees 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. Return to starting position and squeeze your butt. Keeping your toes facing forward, step the left foot a few feet to the side and bend both knees 90 degrees with your chest high. Step the left foot back to starting position and squeeze your butt. Step the left foot back into a reverse lunge. Bend both knees 90 degrees, keeping the shoulders stacked over the hips. Bring the left foot back to starting position and squeeze your butt. Repeat front, side, and reverse lunges on the opposite side and continue to alternate between left and right sides.

4. Lunge and Twist

How to do it: Start by standing up straight with feet about hips-width apart and hands clasped at chest height. Take a large step forward with your left foot and bend both knees 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. Twist from the waist to turn your upper body to the left as far as you can without compromising your balance. Twist back to center, then step your left foot back to starting position. Repeat on the opposite side, this time twisting toward the right. Come back to starting position to repeat one rep, and continue to alternate sides.

5. Curtsy Lunge

How to do it: Start standing up straight with both feet about hips-width apart. Keeping your shoulders over your hips, step your left foot diagonally behind you to the right, then bend both knees 90 degrees. Push into the front heel to come back to standing position, then repeat on the opposite side and continue to alternate.

6. Lunge With Curl

How to do it: Hold one 5- to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing forward, and stand with your feet hips-width apart. Take a large step forward with your left foot and bend both knees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. Bend both knees 90 degrees as you bend both elbows to curl the dumbbells into your shoulders, turning the palms to your chest and elbows in. Extend your elbows to bring the weights back down to your sides and press through your back heel as you bring the left foot back to starting position. Repeat on the opposite leg and continue to alternate sides.

7. Lunge With Press

How to do it: Hold one 5- to 10-pound dumbbell in each hand and bend your elbows to bring the weights in front of your shoulders with your palms facing forward, then stand with your feet together. Take a large step forward with your left foot and bend both knees 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. As you lower your torso toward the floor, extend both elbows to press the weights straight up overhead. Press through your back heel to help you bring the left foot back to starting position as you simultaneously lower both weights to starting position with control. Repeat on the opposite leg and continue to alternate sides.

8. BOSU Lunge

How to do it: Stand a couple feet behind a BOSU ball on a non-slip surface. With your left foot, take a large step forward onto the center of the BOSU ball. Keeping your shoulders stacked over your hips, bend both knees 90 degrees, engaging your butt and thighs for stability. Press through your back heel to help you bring the left foot back to starting position. Repeat on the opposite leg and continue to alternate sides.

9. Swiss Lunge

How to do it: Stand a couple of feet in front of a Swiss ball on a non-slip surface. Stretch your left leg behind you and place the top of your left foot in the middle of the top of the Swiss ball. Keeping your shoulders stacked over your heels, bend both knees until the front thigh is parallel to the ground. Press through your front heel to come back to standing position. Do as many reps as you’d like without dropping the elevated foot, then switch sides to even it out.

10. Reverse Lunge Kick

How to do it: Stand with your feet hips-width apart, hands clasped at chest height. With your right leg, take a large step backward and bend both knees 90 degrees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. Next, press into the front heel and kick your right leg straight out in front of you, lifting the leg as high as you can. Lower the leg with control, bringing the foot right back to reverse lunge position. Complete as many reps as you’d like with the right leg, then repeat on the opposite side.

11. Switch Leg Lunges

How to do it: Stand with your feet hips-width apart. Take a large step forward with your left foot and bend both knees, keeping your shoulders over your hips. Keeping your shoulders stacked over your hips, bend both knees 90 degrees. In one explosive movement, extend both legs and jump straight up into the air, landing with your right foot forward and left foot behind you, knees soft. Bend both knees 90 degrees, then reverse legs again. Continue to alternate lead legs.

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