What do instagram influencers have in common with regular Joes (and Janes) like you and I? We can all benefit from more booty workouts! All jokes aside, the gluteal muscles are some of the most important muscles for whole body stability, athletic power generation, and injury risk mitigation. Weakness--or poor control--of this essential muscle group is one of the most common findings we see everyday leading to a whole host of issues involving the knee, hip, lower back, and pelvis. So if you’re experiencing a bit of pain in any of those places, always have trouble “activating” your butt, or just want some new ways to build up your insta-booty, this post is for you!
The first exercise we have is a banded side step. In setting up for this one you can place the band just above your knees (easier) or at the ankles (harder). Then reach your hips back into a slight squat moving your weight back as far as you can. Keeping your core engaged and trunk stable (no rocking) step side to side as shown, maintaining the toes on both feet pointing straight ahead. The goal for this one is to feel a good burn on the outside of your butt in a muscle called the gluteus medius or glute med. The glute med is one of the most important muscles for controlling the position of your knee as well as for stabilizing your pelvis and lower back. Keep stepping side to side until you get a good burn, take a short 30 second break and repeat one to two more times.
Next on the agenda is a banded skater. The setup for this one is exactly the same as for the banded side step. This time, however, you’ll want to center your weight over the standing leg as you move the other foot out and back at a 45° angle to just touch the toes to the floor (without shifting your weight) and come back to the starting position. Again, ensure that you sustain good core engagement with a stable trunk (no leaning this time) and keep both feet pointing straight forward. We’re looking for that same burn in the outer butt, targeting the glute med. If the health benefits mentioned above aren’t enough motivation, a big, strong glute med will also make your butt look better! For this one aim to get somewhere between 15 and 20 reps per side for three sets.
Moving on to the gluteus maximus (aka glute max), we have this awesome variation of a hip thrust holding onto TRX straps. The glute max is the biggest and strongest of the glute group and having good strength and control here is essential. Holding the straps adds the benefit of greater activation through the whole posterior chain. For the setup, position the straps so that your shoulders are level with your knees, your feet are flat on the floor, and your hands on the handles are above your hips. From this position push straight down into the floor through your whole foot, making sure that you are applying pressure through the ball of your foot, your heel, and your toes. Keeping your tailbone tucked and your back flat, raise your hips up making a straight line from your knees to your shoulders, keeping your knees slightly to the outside of your feet. Perform three to four sets of 10-20 reps.
This next one is a real burner. Side planks on their own are already excellent for building glute med strength, but adding the dip is a real challenge. There should be a straight line from your knee to your shoulder at the start. As you lift your hips, keep the tailbone tucked and your back flat while squeezing the glutes to push your hips forward. Keep your knees apart throughout and turn your hips to face the floor as you hinge back and dip toward the floor. Do three to four rounds of 15-45 seconds on each side.
Last but not least, we have some eccentric isometric Romanian deadlifts (how’s that for a name?). These will target not just the glutes, but also the hamstrings and back extensors. Timing is everything here, focus on a slow five second eccentric (lowering) portion of the lift, a five second hold at the bottom, and a quick concentric (up) portion. This tempo greatly increases the time under tension and helps to build more strength, endurance and stability. The movement should all take place at the hips, with a constant slight bend at the knees and no change in the position of your spine. Start with a light weight and build up, the tempo will make it plenty challenging. Start with three sets of six to eight reps.
There you have it, five exercises to add to your booty-blasting arsenal. Getting some type of glute training in at least twice a week should really start building up the gains. So whether you’re looking for a competitive edge athletically, to stay healthy, or to just get more likes on your next post, the solution is the same--train that booty. Try working these into your programming and reap the benefits of a strong, healthy butt.
More questions about booty-training, or how to keep your body in tip-top shape? Give us a call or CLICK the button below and fill out the form :)