Developing your outer thighs and butt muscles will allow you to backpack and hike longer, make quicker turns down the ski slopes and keep moving up a sheer rock face when others are giving out. Several different exercises are available to add to your regular routine, allowing you to focus specifically on developing strength in these parts of your body.
The band walk is a very good exercise for the outer thighs. It requires a stretch band long enough to extend around your feet. Step on the resistance band and hold each side tight. As you tighten your stomach muscles, step to the side with one leg while holding the band tight against your thigh. Then move your other foot in the same direction. Next you reverse so that you are first moving your opposite leg in the opposite direction. This exercises not only your outer thigh, but also your calves.
The low walk can create quite a burn in your outer thighs in a short duration. Horst Abraham, in his book "Skiing Right," recommends doing the low walk in two to five sets with short breaks in between. This exercise is done by squatting low to the ground and walking. You may have heard this exercise referred to as a duck walk, and you certainly will resemble a duck as you waddle around. Do the walk until the burn in your thighs forces you to stop.
A fitness center or home gym can help you do an exercise known as knee extensions that will help develop your hamstrings as well as your outer thigh. This exercise can cause knee pain in some people, so it's not ideal for everyone. Find a universal weight machine or a Nautilus machine with a leg extension device. Knee extensions require you to lift the bench with your shins until your legs are straight. If you can't get your shins parallel to the floor, you won't be exercising your thigh muscles to the fullest extent, according to the book "Basic Weight Training for Men and Women."
Raised Leg Curl
The raised leg curl is an easy way to work your butt muscles without needing weights or much room. As long as you have space to get down on all fours you can do this exercise. "The Male Body: An Owner's Manual" recommends doing it with an ankle weight for maximum effect. Place your palms on the floor with your back parallel to the floor. Rest on one knee as you curl the heel of your other leg up toward your rear end. Make sure you keep your thigh level as you bend your knee so that your shin sticks straight up. Point the toe of your shoe toward the ceiling. In order to work your butt muscles, you need to concentrate on making sure that the only movement comes from you knee.
Article Written By Timothy Sexton
Timothy Sexton is an award-winning author who started writing in 1994. He has written on topics ranging from politics and golf to nutrition and travel, and his work appears online for Zappos.com, Disaboom and MOJO, among others. He has also done work for "Sherlock Holmes and Philosophy." He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of West Florida.