While not all of us can shake it as well as Shakira, we can obtain rockin' legs and abs like her. And the good news is you don't have to learn to dance on a professional level to get there. There are so many simple moves inspired by dancers that anyone can use and still see results. (Bonus: they're fun, as all workouts should be!) We've gathered up seven go-to moves to shimmy your way to a happier, healthier you. Stick to this regime, and you'll start to see the beginnings of a dancer's body.
For dancers, it's all about stability. Stabilization comes from the core; and while that can help with a dancer's craft, a tight core can help you look and feel good. Whenever doing any of these moves, always remember to keep your posture up and your abs in nice and tight, not only for a better workout, but also because it prevents you from injuring yourself. Not only is your core important, but what catches your eye about a dancer is their strong, lean legs. All of these awesome workouts will you give you legs you'll be proud of.
Get those legs tight from ankle up with this move. You can do this move on flat ground or take it to the next level by doing it on the stairs or with dumbbells. This is a great move to do anytime of the day — standing in line, waiting for the microwave to beep or brushing your teeth!
- Step 1: Grab a pair of dumbbells and hold them at your sides. Relax. Feet are under the hips; chest is lifted.
- Step 2: Exhale and press up onto the ball of each foot. Instead of shifting your weight forward, think vertical – act like your tapping the crown of your head to the ceiling. Inhale and release.
This is a great move to work your booty and core at the same time! It's a variation of a side plank that can really change your usual workout routine.
- Step 1: Come to your side and boost yourself up on your elbow.
- Step 2: Lift the hip off the floor, keeping the legs bent and stacked.
- Step 3: You'll open and close the top leg without sagging your hips.
Have you seen a ballerina's arms? Those pretty things may look delicate, but they are strong, too. Who doesn't want that? Try this move out to not only get toned arms, but while keeping your core tight along the way, you'll see a stronger abdomen as well.
- Step 1: Start sitting down with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor and hands on the ground slightly behind your shoulders with fingertips facing your booty.
- Step 2: Lift your butt slightly off the floor with arms still straight, then bend at your elbows as you lower your butt until it’s hovering just above the floor.
Best move ever. Why? It's an AMAZING workout for your glutes. You'll feel the burn while you tone and tighten that booty.
- Step 1: Start on all fours with a flat back, and keep the abs pulled in tight (belly button to spine).
- Step 2: Lift left knee up and out until it is the same level as your hip, keeping knee bent and foot flexed.
- Step 3: Lower to start position. That’s one rep.
When you think "core," don't just think abs. Your lower back takes on a lot of stress to work your body out. Use this move to strengthen it. This move will also tighten that booty, too.
- Step 1: Lie on your back with the knees bent and feet on the floor. Place a dumbbell between the hip bones and hold it there with your hands during the entire movement. Make sure your shoulder blades are tucked underneath and your neck is comfortable.
- Step 2: Exhale and drive through your heels as you squeeze the glutes to lift. Do not try to lift using your lower back. You should feel tension in the glutes, hamstrings and quads. To help relieve any tension in the lower back, pull the belly button in toward the spine. Stop the lift when your hips are in line with the thighs and torso. Inhale and slowly release the move, rolling the vertebrae down until the pelvis hits the floor, then immediately go for the next rep.
The infamous squat: a move everyone should do. When you get a squat correctly, you are not only going to work your bum, you will essentially tighten everything. To tighten even your arms while squatting, hold some light dumbbells (unless you like a challenge — who says they have to be "light"?).
- Step 1: Begin standing with your feet slightly wider than hip-width distance apart, holding a set of dumbbells at your sides.
- Step 2: Keeping your back straight and knees behind your toes, sink your hips back and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the ground.
- Step 3: Press though your heels to drive yourself back up to standing. That’s one rep.
As it's been said, a dancer's bod is all about the core, and the plank is the perfect move to strengthen yours. So, drop down and give me 5 reps, holding for 20 seconds and resting for 5 seconds (gradually progress to a minute).
Your inner and outer thighs will feel the burn after this leg lift variation. Rather than lifting one leg at a time, your lower leg rises to meet the rising leg! Keep your core tight during this exercise and allow it to move your limbs.
- Step 1: Come to your side on the floor with your bottom arm extending overhead. Place your other hand either in front of you for balance or behind your head. Lift your top leg so it's about 1 to 2 feet apart from the bottom leg. Hold it here. This isometric hold will work the outer thigh of the top leg.
- Step 2: Without moving the top leg, exhale and lift the bottom leg until it makes contact with the top leg. This contraction will work the inner thigh of bottom leg. If you feel your bottom hip dig into the mat, you can bring the legs forward slightly until it stops or try putting folding your mat in half for extra cushioning. Inhale and release the bottom leg first, then the top.
Remember, you don't have to be a top-notch dancer to look like one. Get up and start doing these moves. Make sure to have a fun playlist in the background.