When the topic of glute training comes up, the majority of people think that squats and lunges are the go-to exercises. Especially with all the #squats on Instagram. While those are great to do, they're not the only exercises you should do.
It's important to realize that the glutes help rotate your leg outwards, take it to the back and side. So it makes sense to to train in all those directions to make sure you're hitting all the muscles. If you only do squats and lunges you're missing out on a big chunk of muscle fibres.
You don't need access to a gym or any weights for that matter. You can get a solid workout right in your living room. The key is training with enough frequency, doing the right exercises, with proper form.
Also since you won't be using heavy weights, you can do these exercises more frequently, two to three days a week if you're able to.
Make sure to focus on proper execution with these exercises to get the most out of them. If you're just starting out, start with two sets of 10 to 20 repetitions and gradually work your way up to three or more sets. Also, if you're a beginner you might not feel these in your glutes right away. The more repetitions you do the better you will get at activating the muscles and you'll start to feel more of a burn.
For the hip thrust, place your shoulder blades on a chair, bench or couch with your feet hip width apart. Drive your hips up and focus on flexing your glutes, not hyperextending your back. You should feel this in your glutes not your lower back. In the finished position with your hips up, your shins should be vertical. If they're not, move your feet forward or back.
Lower your hips to the floor and repeat.
Seated Band Abductions
Seated band abductions are great for developing the outer-side of the hips. For these, sit on the edge of a chair or couch with a resistance band just below the knees and place your feet wider than hip width. Push your knees out as far as you can, hold it for a moment. Bring your knees close to each other under control and repeat.
Single Leg Glute Bridges
For this exercise, lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat and hip width on the floor. Raise one foot off the ground and brace your abs. Pushing through your heel, drive your hips up flexing your glute. It's important in this exercise as well to not arch your lower back as you raise your hips.
The best exercises or workout routine won't get your results without consistency. When you add in new exercises keep them in your program for at least four to eight weeks to see changes. As you progress you can increase the number of sets and repetitions and also use heavier bands.
If you've only been doing squats, lunges and deadlifts until now, these exercises will work your butt in a whole new way.
Photos courtesy of Kia Khadem
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