3 Key Glute Exercises for a Stronger and Better Butt!

Building a BOOTY!

Even if your goal doesn’t involve getting a better butt (why wouldn’t it tho?) having strong glutes is very important for many reasons.

Often times, low back pain is caused by weak or inactive glute muscles. Strengthening the glutes will help your body function properly, so your lower back isn’t taking on the burden of poor movement.

Strong glutes are the key to almost every athletic endeavor. Anything that involves the hip extension movement (swinging a bat/club, sprinting, throwing, jumping, creating full-body power) will benefit from having stronger glutes.

Try these 3 key exercises to strengthen your posterior, to feel better, and maybe fill out those jeans a little better 😉

  1. Barbell Hip Thrusts – studies have shown that these are the king of targeting your glute muscles for maximum muscular activation. Be sure to keep your abs tight, drive through your hips, and squeeze your butt HARD at the top of the movement.
  2. Weighted Step Ups – keep your chest tall, and drive your heel into the step. For maximum glute involvement, try using a step that puts your stepping thigh slightly above parallel with the ground. Try to avoid using your foot that is on the ground to push off.       
  3. Weighted Romanian Deadlifts – either 2 legged or single-legged works very well. Drive your hips back like you are pushing a drawer shut with your butt. Drive your hips forward and squeeze your butt hard at the top. Make sure you keep your spine locked and core tight. All the movement should come from the hips, not the lower back.

 

Click HERE for link to the video as well.

How would you structure a week for optimal glute development?

I recommend hitting glutes with compound movements at least 3 times per week, with a volume of about 6-12 working sets per week.

Reps: a mixture of reps anywhere from 6 to 20 – as long as the reps are challenging by the last few, that’s what matters most.

Example:

  1. Monday – Barbell Sumo Deadlift 4 x 6
  2. Wednesday – Walking Lunges 3 x 12
  3. Friday – Hip Thrusts 3 x 15

If you need help getting started, look no further than online coaching. Training and nutrition! Let me help you find the best plan for you – from anywhere in the world.

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Why Having A Nice Booty Solves All Your Problems

Now that I have your attention, I want to make one thing perfectly clear. I think everyone needs to have a nice, strong, butt. Not just because it looks good, but because it can solve so many problems (beyond just being able to fill out your jeans). All immature inappropriate comments aside, having strong glutes can be a huge benefit for many reasons.

I know this firsthand. At the end of my freshman year in college I had a cyst removed from my tailbone area, via cutting through my lower back muscles and then stitching me up with about 50 external and internal stitches. I spent the first month of that summer not being able to even sit on my butt, I had to lay sideways to prevent the stitches from ripping out.

Because of this surgery, I couldn’t do any exercises that involved hinging at the hips for about 1.5 months. After 1.5 bro-tastic upper body only months of lifting, I finally got back to being able to to do lower body. I literally had to start with 135 on the deadlift all over again because of how weak my lower back was.

Thankfully, I had a strong tush from before the surgery (from football and track), and quickly got my lifts back up. I firmly believe that having a strong posterior prior to my surgery really made my life easier afterwards, as I have heard of people taking much longer to get back to lifting pain free from similar surgeries.

The following are 5 of the best reasons to train your glutes, and train them seriously:

1) Already eluted to this – prevent injury.

Weak glutes can lead to muscular imbalances and thus leading to knee, ankle, hip and lower back pain. An imbalance in the hip can lead to excessive medial rotation of the femur – leading to knee issues. Also, when the glutes are weak, the lower back tends to take on some of the work and can become tight and/or injured. Lastly, weak glutes can lead to over active hamstrings which can cause more risk for hamstring cramps.

2) Better Athletic Performance

Have you ever seen an elite athlete with no butt? Strong glutes are essential in almost every sport. They are responsible for accelerating, decelerating, changing directions and creating explosive power in jumps. “Sprinting is one of the most effective exercises for simulating the glutes and activates 234 percent more of the gluteus maximus muscle than a vertical jump, says the glute guy, Bret Contreras, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Athletes with strong glutes will be faster, more efficient and explosive in their movements than athletes with weaker glutes.

3) Better Exercise Performance in The Gym

Having strong glutes will help stabilize your body in any standing exercise. The gluteus medius especially helps with stability and can create a stronger base of support to push, pull or throw from. Also, having strong glutes will help your other lower body lifts increase if your goal is to get stronger.

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4) Increased Calorie Burn 

Glutes are a huge muscle in everyone, no matter what your curves look like. Every time we train them heavy and seriously, we are getting a huge muscle activation along with some great post-exercise calorie burn. Want to get the most out of your weight workouts? Skip the skimpy light weight isolation exercises and focus on hitting the big muscle groups – the glutes being one of the most important.

5) Your butt will look better (in complete seriousness here)

Have you ever heard anyone say, “I want a flatter butt!”. I didn’t think so. It is okay to train for aesthetic goals. There is nothing shallow about it. Look better, feel better or feel more confident. Physical attraction can be a huge motivator, so why not try to look a little better? The bigger reason for wanting to look better is your “Why“. Why do you want to look better? That will pull out some deeper and more motivational reasoning.

 

So how do you get a better booty?

Here is a short, but not complete list of exercises that I recommend incorporating into your workouts at least 3 days per week.

  • Deadlifts (any variation, focus on glute squeeze at the top)

Start with 2 sets of 8-12 reps of each of these with challenging weights, meaning when you get to your final rep, you should feel fatigued.

Give these a try, and you may need to buy some more curvy jeans 🙂

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Stay healthy my friends,

If You Are Sitting Right Now, Get Up and Do These

This quick blog post is being sent to you to improve your day. Guaranteed!

Yes, you that spends 10+ hours sitting all day. That little tweak in your back, twinge in your hip, can all be improved right now.

Get up, and try these three exercises to stretch your hips, get your glutes fired up, and mobilize your upper back.

1) Hip Flexor Stretch – get in a half kneeling position. Which ever leg is back, squeeze that glute hard, and push your hips forward. Make sure you aren’t tilting forward with the hips, but rather tilting the hips slightly upward. Pretend like you have a big ol’ belt buckle on and you are trying to tilt it towards your chest. Reach overhead for a bigger stretch. (Hold for 15-30 seconds)

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2) Glute Bridge – lay on your back and drive your hips toward the ceiling while pushing through your heels. The goal is to create a straight line from your knees to your shoulders. Squeeze the glutes HARD, like the great Dean Somerset says, “crack some walnuts”.  Hold the contraction for 1-5 seconds, for 10 repetitions.

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3)Thoracic Spine Rotations – lay on your side, stack your knees and bend your hips and knees to 90 degrees. Place the hand of whatever side you are lying on on your thigh. Reach across your body with the other arm while inhaling. Open up your chest to the ceiling while moving your hand from across your body to the floor while breathing out. Hold for 5 seconds, and repeat 5 times per side.

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Do these three exercises, and your back and hips will thank you later. Enjoy, and stay fit my friends.