Let’s talk about butts. When it comes to toning up, most women are in it for the glutes. Sure, abs and biceps and quads are all important too, but it’s that butt that will get you the Instagram likes and make you feel amazing.
Achieving the perfect booty isn’t easy. Most women turn to cardio activities such as cycling or running to tone up their glutes, and whilst you can tone up this way, it’s not the most efficient method.
You’re far better off using weights and doing specific exercises that target the glutes. It is after all a form of bodybuilding – your butt is a muscle and you need to make it bigger. Being able to delegate a ‘butt day’ may be worthwhile. Exercise until you start feeling the pain – it should hurt to sit down the next day. This way you know that you’re growing your butt.
Here are just a few exercises that will help target your glutes. There are variations on all of these which will be discussed to help you vary up your butt work out and get results.
Also known as a butt lift or a bridge, this exercise involves lying on your back. Keep your knees up and your feet flat on the floor. The aim is to then raise your hips as high as they go to the ceiling and then place them back down again, whilst keeping your shoulders and feet on the floor.
Hips raises will help single out your glutes. There are lots of variations that you can try to have a greater effect. For example, there’s the glute bridge hold which involves holding your hips in the air as long as possible. There are also one-leg glute bridges in which you kick one leg vertically in the air as you’re doing the exercise. On top of this, you can incorporate a bench beneath your feet for an elevated hip raise.
You can read a detailed list of variations at redefiningstrength.com. You can try all these at home.
Squats involve keeping your back straight, leg’s wide apart and then crouching into the sitting position. These exercises target your quads and your glutes.
There are lots of variations on squats with all manner of strange names from sumo squats to curtsy squats, all of which help target the same muscles. There are even ‘third world squats’ which involve touching your heels with your bum. You can see more third world squat workouts at mobilityguardian.com. These are very difficult but great for building those glutes.
You may even wish to incorporate a jump from a squat. This will put more pressure on your quads rather than your glutes so bear this in mind.
Squats are the type of exercise that can be done anywhere at home. They can be great for spicing up household chores – for example, why not do a few squats whilst doing the washing up or brushing your teeth. You can even do squats as you watch TV.
A dead lift is a whole body exercise. Like a squat, you keep your back straight and legs apart and crouch. However, you also have the added addition of a barbell or dumbbells to exercise your upper body.
There are many variations on the dead lift that can more specifically target your butt. For example, there’s the stiff-leg deadlift which breaks all the rules of a standard deadlift, encouraging you to keep your legs straight and bend at the waist as you pick up the weight. There’s also the one leg deadlift in which your whole body pivots on one leg. You can find more details on such exercises at https://www.self.com/gallery/deadlift-variations. Remember that if you’re focusing on your butt, the weight doesn’t matter so much as this will largely be targeting your upper body. The action is most important, so try to focus on this.
Lunges are performed from a standing position. They involve keeping your back upright, and then stepping one leg forward whilst bending down your back leg so that your knee almost touches the floor. This exercises helps to target the quads, hamstring and glutes.
There are a few variations on the lunge. For example, you can do side lunges, which involve stepping sideways and bending on one knee whilst keeping the other straight out (almost like a semi-squat). You can also add to lunges such as kicking through with the back leg or using dumbbells whilst you exercise. Most squats involve you keeping your back straight but there are some in which you can bend over stretch forward.
The likes of https://greatist.com/ offer many variations on the lunge that could be worth trying. Certain lunges can even target certain areas of the butt.
The clamshell exercise is a low-intensity exercise which involves lying on your side and with your knees semi-crunched up. You then open your legs in a clam-shell motion. This is a great exercise that specifically targets the glutes.
There are few variations on the clamshell, which you can check out at https://ascentpt.com. You may also want to try a few related exercises such as side leg raises.