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The bottom line: "The squat is the best exercise for a sexy lower body because it targets the glutes and quads better than many other moves," says Dianne Sykes Scope, an exercise physiologist in East Rockaway, New York. First, ace the basic version, then do the variations on our tear-out cards, which are guaranteed to banish boredom and deliver results.

Your coach: Kim Lyons, celeb trainer and coauthor of Your Body, Your Life, designed these firm-afiers—tough but worth it.

The plan: Mix and match. Try three sets of 12 reps of a few moves on nonconsecutive days, then do the remainders the week after. Bangin' butt and thighs to follow!

  • 1. Tip-Top Toner

    SELF

    Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes out, hands on hips. Squat until thighs are parallel to floor, then lift both heels (as shown). Lower heels for 1 rep. Repeat.

    Watch the video of all the moves.

    Works butt, thighs, calves

  • 2. Rear Raiser

    SELF

    With feet shoulder-width apart, squat all the way down, fingertips on floor slightly in front of feet. Keeping fingertips on floor, lift hips, extending butt toward ceiling with knees slightly bent (as shown). Return to start for 1 rep. Repeat.

    Works butt, thighs

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  • 3. Soccer Sculptor

    SELF

    Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, hands on hips. Squat, then stand and forcefully bring right leg across and in front of body, leading with heel, as if kicking a ball, left arm swinging in front, right arm behind (as shown). Return to start. Switch sides to complete 1 rep. Repeat.

    Watch the video of all the moves.

    Works butt, thighs

  • 4. Bicycle Buffer

    SELF

    Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, hands behind head. Squat, then stand, lifting left knee across body (as shown) toward right elbow at center. Return to start. Switch sides to complete 1 rep. Repeat.

    Works butt, thighs, abs, obliques

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  • 5. Get-Lean Lift

    SELF

    Stand with feet hip-width apart. Squat deeply, extending arms behind torso. Stand, then raise left leg and lower chest until parallel to floor, extending arms forward (as shown). Hold for 1 count, then return to start. Switch sides to complete 1 rep. Repeat.

    Watch the video of all the moves.

    Works butt, legs, shoulders, back, abs

  • 6. Wall Whitler

    SELF

    Squat with back to wall, feet together, thighs parallel to floor, hands on hips. Maintain back and butt contact with wall as you lift left knee toward chest (as shown). Return to start. Switch leg to complete 1 rep. Repeat.

    Works butt, thighs

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  • 7. The Perfect Squat

    SELF

    Perfect your form with these tips from Kim.

    Go low: Drive butt back (as though sitting on a chair), keeping thighs parallel to floor and knees over toes.

    Get grounded: Position feet shoulder-width apart and slightly turned out with your weight on heels. You should be able to wiggle toes.

    Open up: Place hands behind head. Lift chest, and draw shoulders back and down.

    Stay in line: Keep a neutral spine without arching your back; engage your stomach.

    Watch the video of all the moves.

    Works butt, thighs, calves