13/09/2010 11:35 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

I Tried It: The Legmaster Power

Legmaster Power

I'm the Queen of exercise excuses. Too busy, too tired, too forgetful – despite all the good intentions, there often seems to be something that stops me working out. So the idea of shaping up my legs and bum in just one minute a day for a month in my own home sounds perfect. Even I can manage 60 seconds, surely?

The Legmaster Power promises to work over 200 lower body muscles by using the effort of moving your own weight against gravity. In practice, it's a machine with two plates for your feet, two more for weights, and what looks like bike handlebars to grip as you work out.

There's up to three water-filled weights per side, and contrary to normal, the more weights you have the easier it is. Eventually you should work up to having none on at all.

Full of confidence, I started with a single weight. The machine couldn't be simpler to use – starting with your legs in the centre of each track, you slide them both out to the side and then back in using controlled movements, without banging the foot rests at either end.

Straight away, I could feel the machine working those muscles you tend not to use day to day, especially the inner thighs.

It turns out one minute can feel a lot longer than I thought. By 45 seconds my stomach muscles were clenched with the effort, and I desperately watching the clock. After 60 seconds, I practically fell off the machine. But satisfyingly I quickly saw progress.

After a week, it no longer turned my legs to jelly, and after a fortnight I was onto the hardest setting. By the end of the month, a minute was easy, and I'd started trying to boost the number of sweeps back and forward.

There are a couple of downsides. Although the machine isn't bulky, once it's set up, it takes up a reasonable amount of space, so it's not great for a small room. You won't see any benefits above the waist – and effective though it is at streamlining the lower body, I can imagine getting bored at not being able to progress once you're on the hardest level.

However, I could definitely see the effects on my legs, especially my calves which toned up. And while I didn't suddenly going to drop a dress size overnight, the progression proved the muscles really had got fitter.

The best bit was having no excuses – even if I only remembered it last thing at night, I could still fit in a single minute, so I used it every single day.

The Legmaster Power costs £99 from