brooke22This is another post in our series of Fitness Saturday exercises and workouts appropriate to women in the second half of life. Personal trainer Brooke Marrone, president and founder of Brooke Marrone Fitness, in New York City, is our fitness guru.

 

 

The clamshell exercise not only tones your hips but also plays an important role in keeping your back, knees, and hips healthy and strong. 

  1. Lie on your side with you hips stacked evenly on top of each other, your bottom arm out straight and relaxed under your head, and your top arm in front of your body.
  1. Bend your knees up slightly toward your chest at about a 45-degree angle.
  1. Engage your core and rotate your pelvis slightly forward. Slowly exhale as you lift the top knee away from your body as much as you can while maintaining proper form. Make sure your hips remain stacked, and do not allow your hips to open when you lift your knee. Keep your heels together throughout the exercise. 
  1. Pause, then return to your starting position. Repeat 15 to 20 times on each side. Beginners: It’s not about how high you go, it’s about maintaining proper form and keeping your pelvis stable as you lift your leg open and then close it. To advance: Add a resistance band above the knees for more of a challenge.

Muscles worked: Glutes and hamstrings. 

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