Exercises for specific areas of the body

There are exercise routines to help tone up all parts of the body and if you have one particular area that you feel needs more work than another, then simply spend more time working on that. But if you are looking for an all-round tone up exercise regime, try this routine every day which takes approximately 20 minutes. Make sure that you drink plenty of water.

Warm up

It is essential before any workout routine to spend 5 minutes warming the muscles up.

1. Stand with the feet apart and swing the arms forward and down between your legs, bending the knees as you do but keeping the back straight.

2. Straighten your legs, swing your arms back up to the stretched position.

3. Inhale as you stretch, and exhale as you curl down.

4. Repeat as fast as you can 20 times.

Arms and chest

An ideal exercise for trimming upper arms and lifting the chest.

1. Stand with both feet hip width apart and arms down by your sides, holding a light weight (such as a can of beans) in each hand.

2. Bring the arms slightly forwards, raise the hands, then bend and lift the elbows up and back, pushing hard.

3. Lower the arms back down and repeat 30 times.

Stomach and waist

1. Stand with feet hip width apart, arms down by your sides and still holding on to the weights, raise the arms to shoulder level, then bend the elbows.

2. Punch the right hand hard to the right, twisting the body round at the same time so the hips are front-facing.

3. Return to the standing position and this time punch your right fist to the left, twisting the body around as much as possible. Repeat 20 times.

4. Repeat the same sequence but this time with the left hand. Repeat this 20 times.

Thighs

This tones and strengthen thigh muscles.

1. Stand with feet hip width apart and hands resting on the hips.

2. Put the right leg forward and bend the knee, with the left leg back and knee bent, almost touching the floor.

3. Jump into the air, crossing the legs so the right leg comes forwards and the left leg goes back.

4. When landing, allow the knees to bend then jump and cross the legs over again.

5. Repeat 20 times.

Stomach

1. Lie down on the floor, with hands by your sides, both palms facing clown and feet together.

2. Slowly raise both legs vertically.

3. Lower the right leg almost to the floor, then as you begin to raise it again, lower the left leg almost to the floor. Both legs should cross in a scissor position.

4. Repeat 10-20 times.

Hips, buttocks and legs

1. Continue lying on your back on the floor, arms spread horizontally, palms down.

2. Raise the left leg as high as possible, making sure it is kept perfectly straight.

3. Move the foot towards you, cross the leg over to touch the floor on your right side, reaching as high up your body as you are able to. Keep legs straight and shoulders touching the ground.

4. Repeat with your right leg in the same way.

5. Repeat 10 times.

You may find it more comfortable if you use a thin workout mat for the floor exercises.

Cool down

Lie on the floor, relax and rest for one minute, allowing your body to cool down and your heart rate to return to normal.

Other exercises

If you feel you really haven’t the time to spend 20 minutes on a workout, then just do what you are able to.

Exercises for the middle body

This is ideal for working on those flabby abdominal muscles.

1. Lie on your back with knees bent and feet hip width apart on the floor.

2. Bend your elbows and place your hands behind your ears so that your fingertips touch.

3. Move your chin so it is in alignment with the rest of your spine and move your elbows slightly inwards.

4. Pull in your abs gently towards your spine.

5. Curl slowly upwards and forwards until the head, neck and shoulders are clear of the floor. Hold that position for a count of ten, then slowly lower and then repeat.

For the back area

1. Lie on your stomach, arms and legs outstretched.

2. Tilt your head forward so it is resting on the floor or, if more comfortable, rest it on the side.

3. Lift your right leg and right arm a few centimetres off the floor and stretch them out towards opposite ends of the room.

4. Hold for one minute, then slowly lower them back down to the starting position.

5. Repeat with the other arm and leg.

For shoulders and arms

1. Kneel on the floor with your weight on your hands.

2. Pull in your abs so that your back doesn’t sag.

3. Bend your elbows and lower your body down towards the floor.

4. Once your upper arms are almost parallel with the floor, press back up to the starting position, hold and then repeat.