Top 10 Exercises From The XBX Plan

The XBX plan (Ten Basic Exercises) for women was developed by the Royal Canadian Air Force. According to them by performing these exercises for only 12 minutes a day you can achieve a reasonably high level of fitness.

XBX Plan

It is to be noted that your appearance is controlled by the bony frame of your body, and by the proportions of fat and muscle which you have added to it. You cannot do anything about your skeleton, but you can, and should do something about the fat and muscle. Fat softens the bony contours of the body; it helps to keep the body temperature constant; and it acts as an energy storage vault. Fat appears in layers on the outside of the body, covers and lines the internal organs – the heart and blood vessels, for example – and it also makes up a part of muscle. Muscle is the other controllable factor in the appearance. When we are young we are fairly active; the muscles of our bodies are used and they retain that pleasing firmness – muscle tone. The less we exercise muscles the softer and more flabby they become. They become small with disuse, less elastic, and much weaker.

A slight change in diet (along with XBX) can take off, and keep off, several pounds of excess fat over a period of time. The best method is a combination of diet and exercise. A thigh that is made up of little muscle and a lot of fat may have the same measurement as one that has firm muscle and a light fat layer, but – let’s face it – it is just not the same thing.

The XBX (Ten basic exercises) are designed to firm your muscles – not to convert you into a muscled woman. Check out the exercises indicated below:

 1. Toe touching

  • Stand erect, feet about 16 inches apart, arms over head.
  • Bend down to touch floor outside left foot. Bend up and down to touch floor between feet.
  • Bend again touching floor between feet once more. Rise and bend to touch floor outside right foot.
  • Each return to starting position counts one.

toe touches

2. Knee raising

  • Stand erect, feet together, arms at side.
  • Raise left knee as high as possible, grasping knee and shin with hands.
  • Pull leg against body. Keep back straight throughout. Lower foot to floor.
  • Repeat with right leg. Continue by alternating legs – left then right.
  • Left and right knee raises count one.

Top 10 exercises from the XBX Plan

3. Lateral bending

  • Stand erect, feet 12 inches apart, right arm extended over head, bent at elbow.
  • Keeping back straight, bend side wards from waist to left. Slide left hand down leg as far as possible, at same time press to left with right arm. Rise up a few inches and press to left again.
  • Return to starting position and change arm positions. Repeat to right.
  • Continue by alternating to left then right.
  • Bends to left and right count one.

lateral bend

4. Arm flinging

  • Stand erect, feet 12 inches apart, upper arms extended  side wards at shoulder level, elbows bent, outstretched fingers touching in front of chest.
  • Press elbows backwards and upward. Do not let elbows drop.
  • Return arms to starting position and then fling hands and arms outward, backward, and upward as far as possible.
  • Return to starting position.
  • Count one after each arm fling.

5. Sit-ups

  • To begin with lie on back, legs straight and together, hands behind head.
  • Move to sitting position. Keep feet on floor (support may be used if necessary) and back straight.
  • Lower body to starting position.
  • Each return to starting position counts one.

Top 10 exercises from the XBX Plan

6. Chest and leg raising

  • Lie face down, legs straight and together, hands behind head.
  • Raise entire upper body and both legs from floor as high as possible. Keep legs straight.
  • Return to starting position.
  • Each return to starting position counts one.

7. Side leg raising

  • With right side to floor, support weight on right hand (arm straight) and side of right foot, using left hand for assistance in balance if necessary.
  • Raise left leg until it is parallel with floor. Lower leg to starting position.
  • Each leg raise is counted one. Do half number of counts raising left leg. Change to other side and do half number of counts raising right leg.
leg raises

8. Push-ups

  • Lie face down, legs straight and together, toes turned under, hands directly under shoulders.
  • Push up from hands and toes until arms are fully extended.
  • Keep body and legs in a straight line. Return to touch chest to floor and repeat.
  • Each time chest touches floor count one.

Top 10 exercises from the XBX Plan

9. Leg-overs – Straight

  • Lie on back, legs straight and together, arms stretched side wards at shoulder level, palms down.
  • Raise both legs until they are perpendicular to floor, keeping them straight and together.
  • Lower legs to left, trying to touch left hand with toes.
    Raise to perpendicular and lower to right side.
  • Raise again to perpendicular and return to starting position.
  • Each return to starting position counts one.
toe stretches

10. Run and semi-squat jumps

  • Stand erect, feet together, arms at sides.
  • Starting with left leg, run in place raising feet at least six inches from floor.
  • Each time left foot touches floor counts one.
  • After each fifty counts do ten semi-squat jumps.
  • Semi squat jumps Drop to a half crouch position with hands on knees and arms straight. Keep back as straight as possible, one foot slightly ahead of the other. Jump to upright position with body straight and feet leaving floor. Reverse position of feet before landing, return to half crouch, and repeat.

Top 10 exercises from the XBX Plan

If you feel stiff or sore, or if you are unduly breathless at any time, ease up and slow down your rate or progression. This is particularly applicable to the older age groups.


The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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