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10-Minute Tuneups: Let’s Dance

Get toned by dancing

Dance workouts are popular because they add fun and energy to your day-you’ll almost forget you’re burning major calories. Put on your favourite fast-paced music and get your heart rate going with these dance-inspired cardio bursts (some of which truly are blasts from the past). As always, check with your doctor before starting a workout plan.

Of course, ideally everyone should get 30 minutes of fitness a day. But when time is tight, doing one of our 10-Minute Tuneups whenever you can fit it in will make a difference.

To get the most aerobic benefit from this workout, do as many of each exercise as you can, as fast as you can. You can modify the workout to your own fitness level by going with the lower-impact Easier Options until you have built up your aerobic stamina (but try to do at least one Hip-Hop Four-Point Jumping Jack). If you do the Easier Option moves, gradually increase the number of times you try the tougher moves until you are no longer doing the easier option. Have fun!

Warm-up: 1 minute: Dance to your favourite tune. Or simply march briskly in place while swinging arms to shoulder height.

Twist and Jab: 1 minute

Works: Cardio, legs, glutes, obliques and arms

(A) With feet shoulder-width apart, angle both feet to the left, and twist hips to the right. Make fists and lift arms to shoulder height. (B) Do eight jabs in the air in front of you as you twist vigorously with torso and feet. Move feet a little wider, then jab arms across body at shoulder height, punching right and left eight times, alternating arms and twisting with legs wide. Continue twisting-alternating between narrow and wide legs-and jabbing for a total of one minute.

Easier option: Do the move with legs closer together for the entire minute.

Charleston jog-kick: 2 minutes

Works: Cardio, calves, hamstrings, glutes and abdominals

Stand with feet together. (A) Step right leg back into a lunge, bending left knee and touching your right fingertips to the floor. Stand up, jog forward two paces, then (B) kick your right leg up in the air to hip height (or as high as you can). Jog backwards two paces and return to lunging position. Do 30 seconds of lunging with your right leg. Then switch to left leg and do another 30 seconds. Repeat sequence for a total of two minutes.

Easier option: Eliminate the jog and simply lunge back with right leg, then swing it forward into a low kick. Do 30 seconds; then switch to left leg. Repeat entire sequence.

Rocking-horse boogie: 2 minutes

Works: Cardio, legs, glutes, abdominals, arms and shoulders

Stand with feet hip-width apart. (A) Do a hamstring curl by kicking your left heel up toward your left glute, pumping both straightened arms backwards. Drop your left foot back to floor, and immediately (B) lift right knee in the air and extend arms out to the sides at shoulder height. Repeat sequence for one minute, then switch legs, starting with right heel to right glute. Repeat this sequence for another minute.

Easier option: Alternate kicking your right and left heels up toward your glutes for two minutes, doing slow biceps curls with arms.

Hip-hop four-point jumping jacks: 2 minutes

Works: Cardio, legs, glutes, abdominals and shoulders

Stand with feet together, arms at sides. (A) Do a jumping jack (JJ) by hopping both feet out from centre, raising arms above head with elbows bent. Hop feet back together and bring arms down. (B) Jump both feet as high as you can to the left, pumping arms. Hop back to centre and do another JJ on the spot. Then jump both feet forward as high as you can, hop back to centre, do another JJ on the spot. Continue the sequence, jumping to the right and back. Repeat for two minutes.

Easier option: Instead of the jumping jacks, do a step out to the right, then left, while lifting arms to shoulder height.

Footloose: 1 minute

Works: Cardio, legs, glutes and abdominals

Stand with feet together and place hands on glutes with palms facing back. Quickly (A) kick your left heel and then (B) your right heel up to palms, staying light on the balls of your feet as you get heels as high as you can. Repeat for one minute.

Easier option: Step from your left to your right foot, doing low-impact hamstring curls, pulling your heel back to your glutes.

Cool-down: 1 minute:
For 30 seconds, walk in place. For the remaining 30 seconds, gently stretch the major muscle groups you’ve just worked: calves, hamstrings, glutes, obliques, abdominals, arms and shoulders.

Related:
• 10-Minute Tuneups: Towel workout
• 10-Minute Tuneups: Dance workout video
• 10-Minute Tuneups: Fresh moves

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