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Lifts for a Core Balance

Fitness expert Karen Voight shows you a move to work your abs, glutes and leg muscles.

Karen Voight

Los Angeles Times

November 30, 2009

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Develop your lower body as well as core strength with these challenging rear- leg balancing poses. You'll immediately feel the work in your legs, buttocks, back and abdominals. Begin with your hands resting on the seat of the chair for added stability. Once you find your balance and feel comfortable with this pose, try the more advanced move by extending your arms out in front of you, resting them on the top of the chair.

1. Stand facing a sturdy chair or a bench. Inhale, bend forward at the hips and place your hands on the seat of the chair or bench, making sure that your wrists are directly below your shoulders. Shift your weight over your right leg and slowly raise your left leg up to hip height. Be sure to keep both knees straight and both hips and shoulders squarely facing the floor. (The knee and toes of your raised leg should be pointed toward the floor.) Pause while holding your leg at this level for three complete breaths. Lower the leg and repeat on the other side.



2. Stand facing a sturdy chair or a short wall. Inhale, bend foward at the hips and lightly rest your hands on the top of the chair back or on the short wall. Shift your weight to your right leg and slowly raise your left leg up to hip height. Be sure to keep both knees straight and both hips and shoulders squarely facing the floor. (The knees and toes of your raised leg should be pointed toward the floor.) Pause while holding your leg at this level for three complete breaths. Lower the leg and repeat on the other side.

Voight is the creator of a line of fitness DVDs, including "Sleek Essentials."