Perhaps one of the most frequent requests I hear is, “I want to tone my arms!” The truth is, you don’t need fancy equipment for toned, sculpted, strong arms - you need the correct weights and killer moves found in all of our classes!

There’s no arguing that arms are the ultimate barometer to buffness! Unlike your abs and thighs, which make peekaboo appearances only in hot weather, your arms have to be ready for their close-up pretty much year-round. The upper arms and the shoulders have no fewer than nine primary muscles that require some serious firming if you want to make the sort of sleeveless impact you see on the red carpet (wink wink!). Plus we have a ton of cute tanks to showoff your arms now too!

The tricky part is that there’s no consensus on what level of perfect we should be reaching for. According to the data from a national survey, the average woman over 18 years of age has an upper-arm circumference (typically measured around the biggest part of the biceps) of just less of 12 ¼ inches. The truth is, this measurement doesn’t account firmness. Studies of upper-body strength showed that women tend to neglect toning that would add muscle to that mix. Of course, diet and cardio play large factors into your total body composition, but strength training is extremely important to sculpt and shape your body to your desire.

Here are some of my personal favorites:

Renegade Row

  • Works: core, shoulders, upper back, biceps, and triceps

  • How To: Grab dumbbells and get into the top of a push-up position with your hands on the dumbbells and your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart. Bend your right arm and raise the weight to chest level, pressing the left dumbbell into the floor for balance. Lower the weight to the floor and alternate and repeat.

Overhead Press

  • Works: shoulders, upper back, and biceps

  • How To: Grab a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold the dumbbells just above your shoulders, palms facing each other. Press the weights up until your arms are straight overhead. Hold for 1 second, then take 3 seconds to lower the weights back to start. Repeat.

Standing V-Raise

  • Works: shoulders

  • How To: Grab dumbbells and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, arms at your sides. With arms straight but not locked, raise the weights in a V shape until your arms are parallel to the floor. Hold for 1 second, then return to start.

Tip: If you arch your back or swing the dumbbells for momentum in any of these exercises, use less weight.

To prevent plateaus and see continuous results, alternate between light-weight, moderate intensity workouts found in our Candybarre or Hottie Pilates classes and heavy-weight, high intensity workouts found in WiO’s own, Sweata Weatha or Next Stop; Skinny! Incorporating weights in your workouts will also give you a more youthful, slim and shapely appearance - you know, keeping it ‘au natural!’

Sign up for a Toning class and Blended Upper Class ASAP so our team can help you achieve your perfect tank top arms!

What are your favorite upper body moves that have you feeling and looking your best? Tell us and even share your perfect tank top arms with us @WiOwithus #WiOtanktoparms.

xx, Heather Little Miss KiA