Men may have us beat when it comes to pure strength, but women definitely have the advantage when it comes to flexibility, balance, and coordination! Plus, we're more likely to work out with a friend, which opens up even more exercise possibilities. Try out these moves designed to play to your female strengths.
1. Dancer's Pose: Try Dancer's Pose to test your balance and flexibility.
How to do it: Standing on one leg, reach behind you with the opposite hand and grab the inside of your other foot, palm facing out. Pressing your back leg into your hand, allow it to raise up and propel your upper body forward.
Form check: Keep your chin up and opposite arm out to help you balance.
2. Carioca: Agility, coordination, and a good sense of humor make you a natural when it comes to this fancy footwork.
How to do it: Start by running sideways while alternately crossing your right foot in front of and then behind your left. Switch directions and go the other way. The faster you go, the better the workout (and the sillier you look, but that's half the fun!)
Form check: Try to keep your upper body still while you hot step.
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3. Skater Lunge: Women naturally have a lower center of gravity than men, making it easier to keep our balance and stay low to the ground in power moves like this plyometric lunge.
How to do it: Perform a reverse lunge with your back leg slightly at an angle. Leap to the side and bring the opposite leg behind you, only tapping your toe to the ground. Immediately jump back the other direction and continue alternating until you feel the burn.
Form check: Keep your knees bent and stay as low as possible to really work your quads.
4. Sweeping Crescent Kick: This move is the perfect mix of strength, balance, and flexibility with the added bonus of pretending you get to kick someone's lights out (you know you can think of someone you'd like to kick!).
How to do it: Start in a deep lunge, hands in "guard" in front of you. In one sweeping motion, stand up on your front leg and kick your back leg in an arc in front of you.
Form check: Don't worry about kicking super high at first, power and balance are more important!
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5. Splits: Just because you're not in the Cirque Du Soleil or on the cheerleading squad doesn't mean that leg flexibility isn't important. Limber legs mean fewer injuries (in most cases).
Form check: Make sure to do all of your static stretches (like the splits) after your workout, as research shows that stretching before working out makes you more injury prone and up to 30-percent weaker-yikes!