The best glute exercises are well-targeted, highly effective, and challenge more than your strength. A solid glute workout routine will combine resistance movements with balance and coordination to deliver an all-around session. And it goes without saying that a good glute workout should be great fun too.
Glute strengthening exercises do more than just improve muscle tone. They increase blood flow which can help reduce signs of cellulite. Glute exercises can lead to decreased muscle fatigue during walking, running, and climbing the stairs. They can help you maintain a better posture and facilitate leg strength too, enabling you to run faster and jump higher.
A strong gluteus maximus can also reduce your risk of injuries like shin splints, knee pain, or a sore back. Some glute exercises also strengthen the core too. They engage your abdominal and back muscles which can help create a flatter stomach and stronger torso. They can also extend your range of motion, improving your flexibility or sports specific movements like kicking a ball. So here are 10 of the best glute exercises that’ll help you target those hard to hit areas.
#1 – Squat Pulse
The squat pulse is a more challenging variation of the classic squat movement. Begin in a standing position with your feet hip-width apart. Keep your arms straight out in front of you and bend your knees until your thighs are at 90 degrees from your calves. Pulse up and down 10 times then return to your starting position. Repeat two sets of 12-15 reps.
#2 – Curtsey Lunges
Curtsey lunges add a small amount of weight to your workout. Take a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet hip-width apart. Lift your left foot and step it diagonally behind you, bending your front knee as you shift your weight. Use your front working leg to lift yourself back up to the starting position. Repeat on the opposite side to complete one rep of 15.
#3 – Booty Blaster
The original butt blaster delivers the most effective of all glute exercises. Not only does it precisely activate the glute muscles, but it offers different resistance options beyond basic body weight. This enables you to tone and develop your gluteus maximus to its fullest extent.
Adjust the resistance and position your knees, arms, and torso on the pads provided. Place your foot against the plate and extend your left leg up and behind you. Once fully extended, return slowly to the starting position. Repeat this movement 15 times and then switch sides.
#4 – Donkey Kicks
If your facility doesn’t have a Booty Blaster than you can try this basic version. It creates the same movement but doesn’t offer the same possibilities for progression since there’s no resistance involved.
Kneel down on all fours with your arms and thighs positioned at 90 degrees to your torso. Keep your left knee bent and raise your foot towards the ceiling, as if your hip is on a hinge. The sole of your foot should be facing the ceiling at the top of the movement. Then return your leg to its starting position and repeat on the other side. Complete two sets of 12-15 reps on each side.
#5 – Squat Jumps
Squat jumps add an explosive element to your glute workout routine. Start from a standing position with your feet wide apart. Squat down and raise your arms forward as you move. Then jump straight into the air bringing your arms down to your sides as you do. Repeat two sets of 12-15 reps.
#6 – Chair Kicks
Using a chair can provide extra stability, enabling you to push your glute exercises a little further. Stand an arm’s length away from a tall chair with your hands placed on its backrest. Lean forward and raise your right leg behind you, keeping it straight and squeezing your glutes as you do so. Slowly return to the starting position and repeat two sets of 12-15 reps on each side.
#7 – Sumo Squat
Sumo squats test your balance and add a more dynamic element to your glute workout. Stand with your feet wide apart and your hands on your hips. Lower down to a squat position and then shift your weight to one side. Lift the opposite leg to the side whilst staying low, and then return it to the floor. Repeat on the other side and then return to a standing position. Repeat two sets of 15 reps.
#8 – Stability Ball Leg Curls
Stability balls can be incorporated into almost any workout and glute exercises are no exception. Lie on your back with your ankles on top of a stability ball. Lift your torso off the floor and push your hips upward, then contract your glutes so that the ball curls in towards you. Slowly return back to the starting position, then repeat two sets of 12-15 reps.
#9 – Single Leg Squat Kicks
Squat kicks are an upright version of the sumo squat. Begin in a standing position with your feet a little wider than hip-width apart. Hold your arms straight out in front of you and lower down into a squat. Stand back up and lift your left leg as high as you can to the side in a lateral movement. Lower it down and return to a deep squat position, then repeat with the other leg. Complete two sets of 15 reps on each side.
#10 – Doggy Hydrant
The doggy hydrant is exactly what it sounds like… Kneel on all fours so that your hands are aligned with your shoulders and knees are aligned with your hips. Open your left leg out to one side whilst maintaining the 90-degree angle at your left knee joint. Once your thigh is parallel to the floor, squeeze your glutes and return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times on each side.
Top Tips for Effective Glute Exercises
With all glute exercises, there are some fundamental principles to remember. Following these tips will help you to perform each exercise as effectively as possible and get the most out of your workout…
- Maintain proper posture throughout the exercise to reduce the risk of injury.
- Tighten your abs and glutes as you exercise for maximal effects.
- Gradually add weights or resistance to grow your glute muscles.
- Rest for 24-36 hours between sessions to give your muscles adequate recovery time.
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