Exercise: Exercises to Try

Frequently Asked Questions

5. What are some exercises I can try to strengthen my lower body?

Here are 6 exercises to strengthen the lower body. They include

  1. back leg raises
  2. side leg raises
  3. knee curls
  4. leg straightening exercises
  5. chair stand
  6. toe stands

Safety Tips

Back Leg Raises. This exercise will strengthen your buttocks and lower back.

  1. Stand behind a sturdy chair, holding on for balance. Breathe in slowly.
  2. Breathe out and slowly lift one leg straight back without bending your knee or pointing your toes. Try not to lean forward. The leg you are standing on should be slightly bent.
  3. Hold position for 1 second.
  4. Breathe in as you slowly lower your leg.
  5. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
  6. Repeat 10 to 15 times with other leg.
  7. Repeat 10 to 15 more times with each leg.

Side Leg Raises. This exercise strengthens your hips, thighs, and buttocks.

  1. Stand behind a sturdy chair with feet slightly apart, holding on for balance. Breathe in slowly.
  2. Breathe out and slowly lift one leg out to the side. Keep your back straight and your toes facing forward. The leg you are standing on should be slightly bent.
  3. Hold position for 1 second.
  4. Breathe in as you slowly lower your leg.
  5. Repeat 10-15 times.
  6. Repeat 10-15 times with other leg.
  7. Repeat 10-15 more times with each leg.

Knee Curls. This exercise will strengthen muscles in the back of the thigh.

  1. Stand behind a sturdy chair, holding on for balance. Lift one leg straight back without bending your knee or pointing your toes. Breathe in slowly.
  2. Breathe out as you slowly bring your heel up toward your buttocks as far as possible. Bend only from your knee, and keep your hips still. The leg you are standing on should be slightly bent.
  3. Hold position for 1 second.
  4. Breathe in as you slowly lower your foot to the floor.
  5. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
  6. Repeat 10 to 15 times with other leg.
  7. Repeat 10 to 15 more times with each leg.

Leg Straightening Exercises. This exercise will strengthen your thighs.

  1. Sit in a sturdy chair with your back supported by the chair. Only the balls of your feet and your toes should rest on the floor. Put a rolled bath towel at the edge of the chair under thighs for support. Breathe in slowly.
  2. Breathe out and slowly extend one leg in front of you as straight as possible, but don't lock your knee.
  3. Flex foot to point toes toward the ceiling. Hold position for 1 second.
  4. Breathe in as you slowly lower leg back down.
  5. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
  6. Repeat 10 to 15 times with other leg.
  7. Repeat 10 to 15 more times with each leg.

Chair Stand. This exercise will strengthen your abdomen and thighs. If you have knee or back problems, talk with your doctor before trying this exercise.

  1. Sit toward the front of a sturdy, armless chair with knees bent and feet flat on floor, shoulder-width apart.
  2. Lean back with your hands crossed over your chest. Keep your back and shoulders straight throughout exercise. Breathe in slowly.
  3. Breathe out and bring your upper body forward until sitting upright.
  4. Extend your arms so they are parallel to the floor and slowly stand up.
  5. Breathe in as you slowly sit down.
  6. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
  7. Rest; then repeat 10-15 more times.

Toe Stands. This exercise will strengthen the muscles in your calves and ankles.

  1. Stand behind a sturdy chair, feet shoulder-width apart, holding on for balance. Breathe in slowly.
  2. Breathe out and slowly stand on tiptoes, as high as possible.
  3. Hold position for 1 second.
  4. Breathe in as you slowly lower heels to the floor.
  5. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
  6. Rest; then repeat 10 to 15 more times.