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Ready, Set, Sleeveless: 5 Exercises for a Toned Upper Body

Sculpt smoking hot arms and banish bra-strap bulge with these targeted shapers.

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Plank Arm Row and Rotate

What you'll need: a mat

Targets: Shoulders, upper back, chest, triceps, biceps, and abs

  • Start on floor in full push-up position, balancing on hands and toes, body forming a straight line from head to heels. Move feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Keeping hips level, lift left hand off floor and bend left elbow behind you to bring hand next to shoulder.
  • Return to start.
  • Repeat, this time rotating torso to right so that left elbow points up (as shown). Return to start to complete 1 rep.
  • Do 2 sets of 10 reps, alternating sides.

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Dip Kick

Targets: Shoulders, upper back, and triceps

  • Sit on floor with knees bent, feet flat. Lean torso back 45 degrees and place palms on floor under shoulders, fingers facing out. Bring left knee to chest and place left foot atop right knee.
  • Bend elbows directly behind you and lift hips a few inches.

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Pilates Press

Targets: Shoulders, back, chest, triceps, biceps, and abs

  • Start in full push-up position, balancing on hands and toes. MAKE IT EASIER: Keep both knees on floor.
  • Bend right knee 90 degrees so that toes point up.
  • Bend elbows directly behind you, keeping arms close to body, and lowering only a few inches toward floor. Press back up.
  • Do 8 to 10 reps. Switch legs and repeat to complete 1 set.
  • Do 2 sets.

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Strap-Happy Shaper

Targets: Shoulders, upper and middle back, and abs

  • Start on floor in plank position, balancing on forearms and toes, elbows directly under shoulders. Clasp hands together.
  • Press through toes to move body forward, bending elbows until face is almost touching floor. MAKE IT EASIER: Move only 1 inch forward.
  • Press backward with shoulders (not from hips) to return to start position.
  • Do 2 sets of 8 to 10 reps.

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Down Dog to Up Dog

Targets: Shoulders, back, chest, abs, and butt

  • Start in full push-up position, balancing on hands and toes. Lift left foot a few inches off floor.
  • Press hips up and back so that body forms an inverted V, lifting left leg behind you toward ceiling.

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

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patricia.philbin wrote:

People with glaucoma should not do yoga-like exercises that bring the head lower than the heart, unless you have discussed this with your eye specialist. These positions can cause spikes in eye pressure.

5/5/2011 09:39:20 AM Report Abuse
jane_1947 wrote:

I agree they seem incomplte. I could just about feel the burn with each description. Too bad I couldn't really reap the benefits by just reading about excersize HaHa

5/4/2011 03:05:37 PM Report Abuse
mpamplin wrote:

A bit too extreme for those of us who are older (when the flab starts to set in). Is any one able to adapt or modify these exercises to suit the over 60s age group?

5/4/2011 12:26:24 AM Report Abuse
cindylee3735789 wrote:

Story should start out with NOT FOR A BEGINNER! Knowledge of Pilates and Yoga positions needed!

5/3/2011 03:04:05 PM Report Abuse
Rinkerstinker wrote:

Apologies! Too stupid to click on the second image!

4/20/2011 03:19:57 PM Report Abuse
Rinkerstinker wrote:

These exercise instructions are also incomplete

4/20/2011 03:14:21 PM Report Abuse

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