9 easy exercises to strengthen legs

October 2, 2015

Following an illness or injury, it’s important to regain strength your body. With these easy exercises, you’ll develop strong legs in a short time.

9 easy exercises to strengthen legs

1. Exercise for all

These gentle leg exercises are not just effective if you’re recovering from an illness but if you just need a boost in activity. You’ll need:

  • Light to medium dumbbells
  • Towel
  • Pillow
  • Supportive chair
  • Wall space

2. Seated leg extension for quadriceps

  • Sit on a chair with your feet flat on the floor and hold onto the sides of the seat for support.
  • Slowly lift your left leg until it's straight in front of you.
  • Pause for one to two seconds, then slowly lower your leg.
  • Repeat with the opposite leg.
  • Alternate 10 times for one set.

3. Standing leg curl for strong hamstrings

  • Stand facing a wall with your feet about hip-width apart and place your hands against the wall for support.
  • Keeping your back straight, slowly bend your right leg at the knee, raising your heel toward your rear until your shin is parallel to the floor.
  • Pause for two seconds, then return to start. Change legs.

4. March and swing for legs, rear and back

  • Stand with your left hand on your hip and the other on a chair back or tabletop for support.
  • Raise your left knee until the thigh is parallel to the floor, with the foot flexed.
  • Straighten your left leg, pressing the heel forward and toward the floor as you lean your torso slightly backward.
  • Return to the knee-lifted position, then straighten your left leg behind you, leaning forward with your torso. Change legs.

5. Tip-toes for strengthening calves

  • Stand behind a chair with your feet hip-width apart and one hand planted on the chair for support.
  • Using your calf muscles, slowly rise onto your toes as high as comfortably possible.
  • Pause, then slowly lower your heels back to the floor.

6. Seated figure 4 for glutes, lower back and hips

  • Sit on a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  • Cross your right ankle over your left knee so your calf is parallel to the floor and your right knee is pointing to the right.
  • Keeping your back straight, lean forward from the hips until you feel a stretch deep in your right glute muscle. Switch legs.

7. Hamstring stretch

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and both feet flat on the floor.
  • Raise your right leg toward the ceiling, then clasp your hands around the back of your right thigh and gently pull it toward your chest (use a towel if you can't reach). Change legs.

8. Seated calf stretch for calves

  • Sit on the edge of a chair with your left foot flat on the floor and your right leg extended with the foot flexed.
  • Loop a towel around the ball of your right foot and, keeping your back straight, gently pull your foot toward you as far as comfortably possible. Change legs.

9. Knee drop for groin and inner thighs

  • Lie on a mat on the floor (or if more comfortable, on a bed) with your knees bent and your feet flat.
  • Place your hands on the inside of your knees and gently let your knees fall out and down toward the floor or bed.
  • Gently press down to deepen the stretch as far as comfortably possible.
  • Hold, relax, then repeat.

Easy leg exercises

You just need to spend a few minutes each day to strengthen your legs. If you follow these steps, you’ll have fit strong legs in no time.

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