Cellulite is something that over ninety percent of women will face at least once in their lifetime.
Despite this, cellulite is also one of the main skin conditions women seek treatment for – whether it’s through cellulite creams, cellulite massagers or diet and exercise, we are always attempting to look for that miracle treatment.
Safe to say, the most proven way to get rid of cellulite on your body is through exercise – and with specific, targeted moves you can blast away cellulite for good.
Take a look at this guided step-by-step of some exercises you can add into your routine to reduce the look of cellulite. The best part? You can do them all from the comfort of home!
What Is Cellulite?
First, what exactly is cellulite and why does it occur so easily? For most women, cellulite is totally common, with over ninety per cent claiming to suffer from the skin condition at some point in their life.
Although there is nothing wrong with cellulite, many do feel the need to reduce its appearance.
The skin condition can be hard to shake, but there are a few methods you can put in place to stop it from recurring. It’s first important to remember that cellulite is not a disease – and there is a fairly simple explanation as to why it occurs.
The term describes the connective, fatty tissue under your skin (most presently found in your thighs and buttocks). Because women generally have thinner skin than men, women are more likely to suffer from the condition.
Fat cells and collagen fibres are parallel in women’s skin, as opposed to in a net like structure on men – also making it more likely to show on women’s skin.
In turn, when fat cells begin to protrude at the surface of the skin (and pass by collagen fibres) lumps are formed – which is the basis of the “orange peel” skin known as cellulite.
Also, as women age skin tends to become looser and thinner, making cellulite more likely to occur. Those with lighter skin tones are also more likely to see the effects of cellulite.
What Causes Cellulite?
There is no single answer as to why we get cellulite or “orange peel skin” as it’s been nicknamed, and why some people are more prone than others. Although the exact reason cellulite occurs and why isn’t known, studies show they can include:
- hormonal changes
- weight gain
- weight loss
- a poor diet
Some have even claimed that frequent sitting, like people in office work settings, can also cause the skin condition to arise. However, even for those that live an active and healthy lifestyle, who also stick by a healthy diet, cellulite can still happen.
It all depends on the way fat is distributed along the body. Considering the fact that so many different factors can contribute to cellulite appearing.
What Prevents Cellulite?
An active lifestyle and healthy diet have been proven as the most effective way to minimise the appearance of cellulite – but it may not prevent cellulite completely.
For those that maintain a healthy body weight, it’s less likely that dimpling on the thighs, buttocks or abdomen will occur as often. When it comes to reducing cellulite, it’s important to pick exercises that tone muscle – especially on the thighs and belly.
Weight loss programs and regimens can also help reduce the appearance of cellulite. However, in some cases, rapid weight loss has been known to trigger the condition to appear.
This should not discourage from a decision to reach a healthy weight. There is also no way to know whether or not cellulite will appear both pre or post weight loss.
Taking good care of your skin can also help prevent cellulite from occurring. Some experts have claimed that quitting smoking, eating healthy foods and using adequate UV protection can help keep skin smooth, tight and maintain its elasticity.
Combining exercise with the help of cellulite creams and massagers is also a great way to reduce the appearance of dimpled skin – especially when done in a consistent routine.
Does Cellulite Really Reduce With Exercise?
If your really want to get rid of cellulite, the best way is through exercise. Strengthening your butt and thigh muscles is going to reduce fat cells under the skin, and help tighten the connective tissue that is known to cause dimpled skin.
Squats, lunges and HIIT workouts are all known to strengthen cellulite targeted areas (and the entire body too). Targeted exercises can also help boost metabolism, in turn, supporting the body’s health as a whole.
Check out the below exercises that are targeted at reducing the appearance of cellulite.
#1 Lunge Kick
Possibly one of the most basic, and effective, targeted exercises for cellulite is the lung kick.
How to perform a lunge kick
- Lunge position
First, start in a lunge position (see video below if you’re not sure on a proper lunge position
With your right knee bent and your left leg extended back, knees and toes on the floor
Plant your hands on the ground inside your knee, elbows straight
Kick your right leg behind you, with your foot flexed.
Come back to your start position. That’s considered one rep.
these sort of exercises, it’s always best to do three sets of 10 reps before switching legs.
Crunches activate multiple muscles. While they don’t specifically target stomach fat, they can also work other muscles groups, including the chest, hip flexors and lower back.
- Lie down on your back. Bend your legs and place feet firmly on the ground.
- Cross your hands and place them behind your ears, without putting any pressure on your neck. Slowly move your shoulders towards your knees. As you lift, try to exhale out. Don’t rely on your arms to do all the work – and focus on your core lifting you.
- Whilst maintaining control, lower yourself down, returning to the starting position. This is one set. Aim for 4-5 sets in total.
#3 Butt Kick
Butt kicks are a great addition to your workout, particularly if you’re looking to reduce cellulite. They strengthen the hamstrings, and tighten and tone quads, thighs and buttocks.
- Lie on your stomach with your legs bent (but your knees should we wider than hip-distance) and heels touching.
- Lift your upper chest off the floor, using your forearms for support.
- Then, while squeezing, raise your legs further behind you and return to the start position.
#4 Criss Cross
- Start by sitting on the floor with your feet planted forward and your hands on the floor behind you. It’s best to have fingers facing towards your butt.
- Slowly lift your hips and extend your left leg over to the other side.
- Follow that by straightening your left leg and lowering it to the right. This should make the outside of your shoe touch the ground.
- Hold this position and then cross it over to the other side. This counts as one repetition. Repeat 10-12 times or until failure.
#5 Clockwork Lunge
- Keep your hands resting on your on your hips and feet shoulder width apart.
- Starting with your right foot, take a big step forward until you reach a 90-degree angle and your opposite knee is nearly touching the floor. Push and revert back to start position.
- Take a big step left with while bending your knee and keeping the opposite leg straight. Return to starting position.
- Take a big step back with your right foot, lower until your left leg reaches a 90 degree angle and your right knee is barely touching the floor. Return to the starting position.
- Repeat with the left foot, stepping to the front, then to the left side, then back. That’s one set. Try repeating this 10-12 times on each side or until failure.
#6 Resistance Band Butt Blaster
The resistance band is a great way to strengthen your body without gym equipment.
- Begin by placing your knees on the floor and pulling a band under the right foot. Try to keep your palms fixed on the ground in line with your shoulders.
- Lift your right knee off the floor slightly and push right foot back to extend leg straight against the band, squeezing your glutes while you do this.
- Come out from the position slowly, returning your knee into a bent position. Do three sets of 10-12 reps before switching legs.
#7 Hip Bridge
This exercise is good for targeting both your abdomen and buttocks.
- Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor at hip-distance apart.
- Lift your hips gradually until your hips and chest are in a straight line. Try to squeeze your glutes while doing this movement.
- Aim to hold this for 5 seconds, then lower yourself down slowly maintaining control of the movement at all times. Aim for 4 sets of 12 repetitions.
#8 Plié Squat With Alternating Heel Raise
- Stand with your feet just wider than shoulder distance.
- Slowly drop yourself down until your thighs become parallel to the ground.
- Push yourself back up to a standing position. That is one rep. If you want to kick it up a notch, raise your heels as you lower yourself down to really work the legs and buttocks.
- Return to starting position Repeat for 3 sets of 12-15 reps or until failure.
Crunches are one of the most commonly used abdominal exercises out there – but they aren’t necessarily the best way to create muscle and strengthen the core. Planks can improve core strength and stability – and help to reduce the appearance of dimpled skin on the belly.
- Start by placing yourself in a pushup position. Keep your hands flat and toes planted on the ground, whilst your core is tight and back is straight.
- Be careful to watch your form as you don’t want to injure your lower back. Avoid letting your head sag.
- For beginners, it may be easier to start lower down to your forearms, maintaining the same positioning and form as the high plank. Hold for as long as you can.
#10 Dead Bug
The dead bug exercise is a popular way to build core strength and stabilisation. It helps build a solid, stable foundation that protects the spine, while also helping develop a toned abdomen.
- Allow your shoulders and lower back to fall heavy on the floor and draw your shoulders down away from your ears.
- To get into the starting position, lift your hands so your elbows are above your shoulders with your fists facing in toward each other.
- Lift your legs so your knees are directly over your hips. On an exhale, slowly lower your right arm and left leg until they’re just above the floor.
- On the inhale, bring them back to the starting position. Repeat on opposite side. That is one rep. Complete three sets of 10 reps.
While these exercises are targeted at cellulite prone areas, the best way to combat the skin condition is by joining these with fat-burning cardiovascular exercises, or HIIT (high intensity interval training).
HIIT, which involves a short workout and quick bursts of energy with quick resting periods, targets cellulite affected areas while also reducing the body’s overall weight.
The body will also keep burning energy following the workout, which is an added bonus. Consider a mix of exercises, and try to increase the intensity of your cardio workouts as you become stronger.
An example of a HIIT workout would be combining some of the above exercises together with only a minute rest in between each. For an even greater burn, try adding in weights and resistance bands.