Pret-a-Reporter

Makeover Monday: How to Get Legs Worthy of a Sky-High Slit Red-Carpet Gown

Jason LaVeris/Getty Images ; Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic
Hilary Swank (left), Demi Moore

Long, lean gams are just a few grueling workouts away.

Mention a leg-baring red-carpet gown and it’s hard not to reference the black Atelier Versace dress with the sky-high slit that Angelina Jolie worked at the 2012 Oscars. Since then, at nearly every event there's a notable gown-and-gam pairing.The runways also have been full of leggy, lengthy dresses (witness Giambattista Valli’s spring 2017 haute couture show and Christian Siriano's fall 2017 ready-to-wear).

In fact, long, lean, tan and toned legs have become such a must-have accessory that workouts are being tailor-made for them. 

Celebrity trainer Danny Musico says it’s the most common request he’s gotten from his actress and model clients. And Musico should know, the former super middleweight boxing champion trains Hilary Swank, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jessica Simpson, Demi Moore, Mark Wahlberg, Jamie Foxx, Justin Bieber and Toby Maguire for roles and real life.

For the toned but not bulky legs his clients have been craving, Musico, who has also spent his fair share in front of the camera playing a detective on Law and Order for seven years and himself on Entourage, recommends a series of exercises and fast interval workouts, burning the fat but keeping the lean muscle definition.

“When it comes to a dress with a high slit, it’s all about the lines of the leg and getting definition without bulking up.” says Musico, who works out of the Sixty Hotel in Beverly Hills. “To achieve that, it’s about engaging the core and the lines of the side of the leg.”

For what he calls “runway legs,” Musico recommends leg overs, which are done by placing both hands and one knee on a bench. Swing the free leg over in an arc-like motion from side to side over the bench.

For those sought-after “red-carpet legs," Musico puts his clients on a machine called the Frog Trainer, an apparatus with four wheels that requires an insane amount of core strength to draw the lower body up toward to top of the body, forming a pike-like position.

Musico also uses an exercise bike called a Realryder, which, unlike a typical stationary bike, can articulate to bend at the handles by utilizing and toning the side body while pedaling to define the legs.

The fat-burning portion of Musico’s workouts are intense, to say the least (he also is an off-season strength and conditioning coach for the Los Angeles Rams football team), but what he recommends as an integral part of the leg-toning regimen. We’re guessing that a few grueling workouts are a small price to pay for the celebrities who choose to show a significant amount of leg on the red carpet on Oscar Sunday.

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