Subscribe

Are you a fan of training your lower body in the gym? 

Even if you’re diligent with regularly targeting all of your muscle groups, it is unlikely that your inner thigh muscles are getting a lot of attention

Many of us neglect the adductors. However, you can easily create an inner thigh workout that challenges these muscles while working other parts of your lower body simultaneously.

Why the inner thigh? 

Toned inner thigh muscles look great both in sportswear and everyday clothing. Another common reason is that some don’t like it when their thighs rub together. 

Overall, you may feel more confident when there’s less body fat in that particular area.

As a personal trainer, I help people discover the best exercise for inner thighs for their routine. From there, we learn how to stick to an effective plan that delivers real results.

Keep reading to learn about inner thigh exercises you can do at home and the gym, what the benefits of having strong inner thighs are, and what an ideal workout looks like!

What is the inner thigh?

inner thigh workout

The inner thigh is the area of your legs that touch when your feet are pressed together. The inner thigh covers the inside of your leg starting at your pelvic bone and ending right above your knee.

While the inner thighs are rarely a focus during someone’s workout, they’re an important part of the leg to target to assist with gaining strength. 

They’re also essential to being able to move around everyday life with ease.

The Anatomy of the Inner Thigh

The muscles of your inner thighs are called the adductors. 

There are five of them in total. They are called the adductor magnus, adductor brevis, adductor longus, pectineus, and gracilis.

The adductors stretch from the pelvic bone to the femur.

What causes inner thigh fat?

inner thigh muscles fat causes

Inner thigh fat does not differ from any other fat on your body. It’s up to your genetics how easily you accumulate fat on your inner thighs.

If you feel as if you have too much fat on your inner thighs, it is likely because you currently are or have been in a caloric surplus. This happens when you eat too much and exercise too little.

It’s understandable to be in a caloric surplus if you’re not aware of how many calories you consume daily. This is easy to resolve. 

How to get rid of inner thigh fat?

Related: Found Weight Loss Review

inner thigh workouts for losing fat

To burn fat on your inner thighs, you need to be in a caloric deficit. You can make this happen by eating less than your maintenance calories, exercising more, or both!

It’s important that you stick to a regular exercise routine and eat nutritious foods that benefit your body. This will make the weight loss journey that much easier.

While performing inner thigh exercises can certainly help improve the shape of your inner thighs, these exercises themselves do not contribute to you losing fat on your inner thighs specifically. 

It is up to your genetics to decide how quickly you burn the fat and where it comes off first.

Main Benefits of Exercising Inner Thigh

Related: How To Gain Weight In Buttocks And Thighs?

When you have strong inner thighs, other areas of the body are more stabilized, and the likelihood of suffering from injuries decreases.

Because of where the adductors are anchored, your knees, hips, and lower back are affected by the strength of your inner thighs. Strong adductors support a strong core and help prevent chronic pains and aches in the surrounding areas.

Many people experience issues with their hips and lower back. Regularly performing inner thigh exercises is a preventative measure that is recommended to take.

Drawbacks of Weak Inner Thigh

Because many people do not effectively target the inner thighs regularly, they may find themselves dealing with any of the following as a result:

  • Knee pain and injuries
  • Lessened hip mobility
  • Minimized balance
  • Tight hamstrings

How to Work Out the Inner Thighs

Related: How Many Exercises Per Workout?

inner thigh workout routine

Luckily, there are many exercises that you can combine to create an inner thigh workout! 

You don’t need a ton of equipment or a gym membership to do this. Whether you go to a gym or prefer to stay at home, be intentional with targeting your inner thighs by performing specific movements.

Essentially, to work the inner thighs, you need to focus on bringing your knee or entire leg inward toward or past your other leg in its natural position.

Top 10 Inner Thigh Exercises to Include in Your Workout Routine 

Related: 12 Week Kettlebell Program

1. Criss Cross Flutter Kicks

Standard flutter kicks are great for working your abdominals and quads, but this criss-cross version also targets your inner thighs! 

Include this exercise on a leg day or as part of an abdominal workout with the added benefit!

Equipment Requirements

None

How-To Perform Criss Cross Flutter Kicks

  1. Lay flat on your back with your arms by your sides. 
  2. Pick your legs off the ground while keeping them straight. 
  3. Bring your legs out wide and then bring them back together with one foot coming on top of the other. 
  4. Have your legs come apart again before alternating which foot is on top when they are together.

Benefits

  • Challenges the inner thighs
  • Works the abdominals 

Pro Tips

  • If you feel your neck straining while keeping your head on the floor, try lifting your head off the ground and tucking your chin into your chest.
  • To make this exercise a bit easier on your abdominals, place your hands under your glutes.

2. Cable Hip Adductions

If you want to add some resistance to an inner thigh exercise, cable hip adductions are a great idea! 

Use these as a finisher or in a superset on a lower body day.

Equipment Requirements

Cable machine and ankle strap

How-To Perform Cable Hip Adductions

  1. Set your cable machine to the desired weight, put on your ankle strap, and connect it to the cable. 
  2. Turn your body so that the leg with the strap is closest to the machine and grab something to help with balance. 
  3. Keeping your leg straight, bring it up and to the side in front of your stationary leg. 
  4. Bring it as far over as you can before releasing it back to the starting position.

Benefits

  • Works the inner thighs
  • Builds stability in the hips

Pro Tips

  • Try to put a bit of distance between yourself and the machine so you can get the full range of motion with your leg.
  • If you feel any pain in your knee, go ahead and bend it a little during the movement.

3. Squeeze and Lift

If you are looking more for a rehabilitative exercise, this squeeze and lift move is great because it is gentle while still effectively challenging the inner thighs. 

You could also use it as a warm-up exercise or a finisher.

Equipment Requirements

Object to place between knees

How-To Perform Squeeze and Lift

  1. Lay on your back with your feet flat on the floor and arms by your sides. 
  2. Place an object, such as a yoga block or small medicine ball, between your knees. 
  3. Contract your inner thighs to press your knees together against the object, and lift your feet off the ground till your thighs are perpendicular to the floor. 
  4. Bring your feet back down and release your knees before repeating.

Benefits

  • Works the inner thighs
  • Challenges your lower abdominals

Pro Tips

  • If you want to make this exercise more difficult, you can skip the step of releasing your knees at the end of the exercise and maintain the inner thigh contraction throughout the set.
  • Want to work your abdominals a bit more as well? Try doing this exercise with your legs straight instead of bent.

4. Lateral Lunges

Related: What is Functional Strength Training?

It is likely you have done front and reverse lunges, but what about lateral lunges? These are a great alternative for anyone wanting to target their inner thighs.

Equipment Requirements

None 

How-To Perform Lateral Lunges

  1. Start in a standing position with your hands on your hips. 
  2. Take a big step out to your right and bend that knee to come down into a lunge. Your other leg should end up being straight. 
  3. Push through your heel and bring that right foot back in before performing this movement on the other side.

Benefits

  • Challenges the inner thighs
  • Works the quads

Pro Tips

  • Try holding onto a chair if you need help with balance.
  • Ensure your knee stays in line with your ankle when you come down into the lunge to prevent any injuries.

5. Scissor Legs Plank

Planks are already amazing for working the whole body, but this variation also targets your inner thighs! 

Finish off a leg day with this killer exercise.

Equipment Requirements

Core sliders, towels, or something similar

How-To Perform Scissor Legs Plank

  1. Find a surface where you can slide your feet on the piece of equipment you have access to. 
  2. Place your feet on the equipment, and come into a plank position with your arms fully extended and your body in a straight line. 
  3. Keep your core strong as you slide your feet away from each other and then bring them back together. 
  4. Repeat this movement for the desired amount of reps.

Benefits

  • Challenges the inner thighs in an explosive movement
  • Stabilizes your core

Pro Tips

  • To make this exercise easier, you can do one leg at a time.
  • To make the movement more difficult, perform it on your elbows instead of your hands.

6. Side Step-Ups

Step-ups are already amazing for working the glutes and quads, but by doing them to the side, you can target your inner thighs as well. 

This exercise works great in a superset on a leg day.

Equipment Requirements

Bench  

How-To Perform Side Step-Ups

  1. Stand beside a bench with the side of your hip facing the bench. 
  2. Bring the closest foot up onto the bench and fully step up. 
  3. Tap the other foot on the bench before bringing it down to the floor. 
  4. Bring your other foot to the ground as well before repeating. 

Benefits

  • Works the inner thighs
  • Targets the glutes and quads

Pro Tips

  • Feel free to hold onto dumbbells or carry a barbell on your back if you want to add resistance.
  • If you struggle with balance, start with a smaller step and work your way up.

7. Sumo Squats

Related: Do Squats Work Abs?

Squats are one of the most impactful exercises because they work multiple muscles at once. 

Sumo squats are especially helpful for targeting the inner thighs and glutes, so be sure to do this variation at least once a week.

Equipment Requirements

None

How-To Perform Sumo Squats

  1. Place your feet wider than hip-width with your toes pointed out at a 45-degree angle. 
  2. Keep your back straight and chest up as you push your knees out and come down to a squat. 
  3. Pause when your thighs are parallel to the floor before pushing back up to standing.

Benefits

  • Works the inner thighs
  • Challenges the glutes, hamstrings, and quads

Pro Tips

  • Ensure your knees do not go over your toes when you come down to prevent injuries.
  • If you want to make this exercise more difficult, you can add weight through means of dumbbells, a kettlebell, or a loaded barbell.

8. Side-Lying Inner Thigh Lifts

Not a lot of movements are as effective for isolating the inner thighs as this one! Be sure to use this inner-thigh workout in a superset or as a finisher on a leg day!

Equipment Requirements

None

How-To Perform Side-Lying Inner Thigh Lifts

  1. Lie down on your side with both legs extended. 
  2. Move your bottom leg so it is in front of your top leg and both feet are on the floor. 
  3. Contract your abdominals as you lift your bottom leg up as high as you can. 
  4. Lower it back down and repeat.

Benefits

  • Challenges the inner thighs
  • Stabilizes your core

Pro Tips

  • Try adding a pulse at the top to make this movement more challenging.
  • Ankle weights are a great way to add resistance to this exercise.

9. Glute Bridges With Prop Squeeze

We already know that glute bridges are an effective lower body exercise, but what about with a prop squeeze? 

Add an object to feel how your inner thighs can be challenged simultaneously with your glutes and lower back!

Equipment Requirements

Object to place between knees

How-To Perform Glute Bridges With Prop Squeeze

  1. Lay on your back with your feet flat on the floor and arms by your sides. 
  2. Place an object, such as a small medicine ball, between your knees. 
  3. While pressing your knees together against the object, press through your heels and bring your hips up to the sky.
  4. Pause here for a moment before bringing your glutes back to the floor and repeating.

Benefits

  • Challenges your inner thighs
  • Works your glutes and lower back

Pro Tips

  • If it is too difficult to squeeze the object for the entirety of the movement, try only squeezing it at the top and bottom for a few moments.
  • Keep your chin tucked into your chest to protect your neck.

10. Adduction Machine

This machine truly allows you to isolate your inner thighs. This exercise should be a primary focus on your lower body days.

Equipment Requirements

Adduction machine

How-To Perform Adduction Machine

  1. Take a seat on the machine and adjust the pads and weight as needed. 
  2. Keep your back flat against the back of the seat as you bring your knees together. 
  3. Slowly release your legs back out before repeating.

Benefits

  • Isolates the inner thighs
  • Stabilizes the core

Pro Tips

  • Placing your hands on your hips, rather than holding onto the handles, can increase the difficulty of this exercise.
  • Try holding your legs together for a few moments before releasing to make it harder.

The Best Inner Thigh Workout Program 

Related: 15 Best Thigh Exercises With Resistance Bands

Beginner

  • Monday – Upper Body Workout
  • Tuesday – Workout #1
  • Wednesday – Rest Day
  • Thursday – Rest Day
  • Friday – Upper Body Workout
  • Saturday – Workout #1
  • Sunday – Rest Day

Workout #1

EXERCISESETSREPSREST TIME
Lateral Lunges310-121 minute 30 seconds
Adduction Machine310-1245 seconds
Side-Lying Inner Thigh Lifts212-1545 seconds
Criss Cross Flutter Kicks220-2545 seconds

Advanced 

  • Monday – Workout #1
  • Tuesday – Upper Body Workout
  • Wednesday – Full Body Workout
  • Thursday – Rest Day
  • Friday – Workout #2
  • Saturday – Upper Body Workout
  • Sunday – Rest Day

Workout #1

EXERCISESETSREPSREST TIME
Sumo Squats412-151 minute
Adduction Machine310-1230 seconds
Glute Bridges With Prop Squeeze312-1530 seconds
Scissor Legs Plank310-1230 seconds
Side-Lying Inner Thigh Lifts312-1530 seconds

Workout #2

EXERCISESETSREPSREST TIME
Lateral Lunges410-121 minute
Side Step-Ups310-1230 seconds
Cable Hip Adductions312-1530 seconds
Squeeze and Lift310-1230 seconds
Criss Cross Flutter Kicks320-2530 seconds

Tips For Training Your Inner Thigh

Related: 25 Protein Boosters To Increase Your Protein

tips for best inner thigh workout

1. Follow the right diet.

If you’re focused on building muscle on your inner thighs, you must be in a caloric surplus. This way, your body has fuel to get you through effective workouts and contribute to the new muscle mass.

On the contrary, if you’re focused on getting rid of stored body fat on the inner thighs, eat in a caloric deficit. The body eventually burns the fat on your inner thighs for energy.

Either way, it is vital that you eat plenty of sources of lean protein and nutrient-dense foods to support your body in the best way you can.

2. Exercise consistently.

Real change only comes with consistency. It is improbable that you will achieve the desired results if you only exercise every once in a while.

Try to have a regular workout schedule in place so hitting the gym or setting up your mat at home becomes a habit. Doing inner thigh exercises one to two times a week is recommended.

3. Recovery is important.

When you work a muscle like your adductors, small tears form that repair to allow the muscle to become bigger and stronger. This process is optimized when the muscle can adequately rest and recover.

You can ensure this by getting at least seven hours of sleep a night, stretching before and after workouts, and having at least one day off from strenuous exercise a week.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the most effective inner thigh workout?

If you properly challenge your inner thigh muscles with good form, the adduction machine is arguably one of the best inner thigh workouts.

With this inner thigh workout equipment, you cannot use the rest of your body weight to swing your leg to make the exercise less difficult. 

You can contract your adductors better when you are seated and performing controlled movements.

How can I tone my inner thighs fast?

While no physical change happens overnight, you can speed up the process by being efficient with your workouts and diet. 

Stick to a regular workout routine with the right exercises for inner thighs, consume plenty of protein, and eat in a caloric deficit to allow your toned adductors to show through!

Can flabby inner thighs be toned?

If you want a toned appearance, you need to lose some stored body fat on your inner thighs while adding muscle mass to the area. By sticking to an impactful inner thigh workout routine and eating in a caloric deficit, this is more than possible!

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed this guide to the best inner thigh exercises to include in your workout routine.

Toned inner thighs don’t just look good. Ignoring the adductors can lead to issues like knee pain and minimized hip mobility. 

Performing inner thigh workouts regularly can help prevent these issues while giving you the look you want.

Comment below your favorite inner thigh exercise, and don’t forget to share this article with anyone you know who would find it helpful!