Who doesn’t want to have a beautiful butt? There are few things on this planet more attractive than a sculpted derriere.
Majestic, aren’t they?
Those butts didn’t get that good-looking on their own. No, sir, it took hard work and dedication to sculpt those glutes to look that magnificent. That means no skipping leg day AND paying extra attention to your butt as you work your upper body, lower body, and core. Perhaps even throwing in a few exercises dedicated to sculpting your butt…
Butt Exercises: They’re For More than Just Looks
Sure, having a beautiful butt can be one of your greatest ASS-etts (yes, pun intended), but did you know that your butt muscles are for more than just good looks? There are some reasons that this butt exercises matter:
- Reduce back pain — Did you know that your glutes support your lower back muscles when they work? If you don’t have strong glutes, all of the strain will be placed on your lower back, increasing your risk of spinal injury and back pain. Training your butt can help to reduce back pain, as the glutes offer stability and strength. The stronger your glutes, the more weight they can support, and the less strain there is on your lower back.
- Reduce knee pain — If your glutes aren’t able to bear the weight of your movement, your body adjusts for the lack of strength by shifting your posture. This can increase the strain on your knees, leading to knee injuries and pain. By strengthening your butt, you improve your overall posture and take the weight off your knees. This will reduce your risk of knee injuries drastically, particularly when lifting heavy weights, cycling, or running.
- Enhance performance — Yes, a strong butt will make you a better athlete overall! Newbie runners often feel pain in their lower back, but it’s usually because their glutes aren’t able to handle the strain. As they strengthen their glutes, the muscles handle more of the strain, taking the pressure off the lower back. Strong glutes can handle lateral (side to side) movements more easily, and they help to enhance lower body stability. You can run and jump more easily thanks to your enhanced gluteal strength.
- Enhance mobility — Your glutes are useful for more than just strength! They work with your hip muscles to move your legs forward and backward. The more you strengthen your hip and butt muscles, the more control you’ll have over your legs. The Greater control means better mobility as you run, jump, and play.
How important is it for you to perform butt exercises? Very! And I’m not just talking about getting beautiful buns…
According to Runners World, the time you spend sitting can negatively affect your overall health. Even runners who spend a lot of time sitting down often suffer from health problems, thanks to the sedentary lifestyle.
The fact that you’re sitting on your butt means that all of your upper body weight is resting on your spinal erectors. This causes your hip muscles to tighten and your glutes to weaken, leading to lower back and knee strain when you exercise. (Here are 5 standing exercises to reduce belly fat that you can try out too)
If you want to combat this problem, it’s vital to spend more time training your hips and glutes. Focusing on your butt can help to keep your core strong and give you better control over your lower body. In the long run, this will enhance your overall performance and reduce your risk of injuries.
The 30-Minute 8-Move Toning and Fat-Burning Butt Workout
Want to work your glutes but don’t have hours to spare? Here is a simple 30-minute workout routine to help you tone your glutes with eight simple movements that focus on your core and lower body. By the end of this workout, your legs and buns will be on fire! You’ll develop serious lower body strength, endurance, and mobility, improving your posture and reducing your risk of injury. What’s not to love?
Here are the eight moves you will need to do:
Image Source: Popsugar Fitness
Squats are one of the best exercises for your lower body, hands down! They recruit the muscles in your quadriceps (thighs), hamstrings (back of your legs), and glutes. They even activate your hip flexors and core muscles to keep your upper body straight as you lower into the squat.
Image Source: The Hufftington Post
If you want solid leg and butt muscles, Lunges are the way to go. They work your lower body as effectively as squats, but in a different way. The split stance places emphasis on your glutes, hamstrings, and quads, and all of the muscles have to engage to lower you into the lunge and push you forward. Lunges tie with Squats as the “most effective lower body exercise”, and they’re brilliant for building a wicked booty.
Once again, your body will correct for a lack of glute strength by tilting your upper body forward. You HAVE to maintain that straight upper body posture or the workout will strain your lower back. Keep that posture tight, and the focus will be placed on your hamstrings, glutes, and quads!
Quad Hip Extensions
Image Source: Dana’s RGF
According to a 2006 study, this is one of the most effective exercises to isolate the glute muscles. It’s also one of the simplest to do, and it will put ZERO strain on your lower back (unlike Lunges and Squats, if not performed properly).
The fact that you’re resting all your weight on your hands and knees means that your glutes have to do all the work of lifting your legs. It’s an isolation exercise that will target your butt very effectively!
For a harder variation, try Donkey Kicks:
Basically, this movement involves the same contraction of the gluteal muscles, but instead of raising your leg parallel to your body, you kick it high into the air. This helps to work the upper gluteal muscles where they connect to your lower back. It enhances stability and mobility while sculpting and strengthening your butt!
Single-Leg Glute Bridge
Image Source: Women’s Health Magazine
This exercise places all of the focus on your glutes and lower back. If you hold the Bridge pose, you’re placing the emphasis on your lower back. If you lower and raise your hips, the focus is on your glutes.
The exercise is fairly simple, but you’ll feel a tightness in your hips at first. This is due to limited mobility, common among those who are new to training their hips and glutes. As you train, the tightness will decrease, and your glutes will go stronger.
The fact that you’re raising one leg into the air means the gluteal muscles of your other leg (the one holding you in position) will have to contract to keep your lower body stable. Definitely a great exercise for serious butt strength and sculpting!
Image Source: Hitch Fit Gym
Rainbows are a surprisingly difficult exercise! You’ll start out strong, but you’ll feel the burn within a few repetitions. This is because your gluteal and hip muscles will contract through the entire range of motion, so there is no relaxing of the muscles. It’s great for both strength and endurance! We highly recommend this yoga mat for the best feeling when you are doing the exercises.
It’s VERY important that you take this movement slowly, and only do what you are capable of. If you extend your leg too far, you could injure your hips. You’ll feel a bit of tightness in your hip muscles at first, but as you train, you’ll notice greater flexibility and mobility. This is one of the best exercises for those who want to focus on that fourth pillar of fitness!
Note: If you feel the burn in your lower back, you’re doing it wrong! The fire should only be in your glutes and hips.
Image Source: Prevention Magazine
This is a “Level Up” from Donkey Kicks and Quad Hip Extensions. It’s a much more challenging exercise, meaning it will burn some serious fat and build muscle. Definitely not easy for first-timers, but it’s highly effective!
Here’s how it’s done:
- Start on your hands and knees. Raise your right leg and extend it behind you.
- Use your toes to “draw” a box counterclockwise in the air. Try for tight, controlled movements, no more than 6 to 12 inches in any direction.
- Once you complete half the reps in your set, reverse the direction (draw clockwise) for the other half.
This is an incredibly intense workout, but one that builds serious butt strength. After just a couple of sets, you’ll feel the burn like a rockstar!
Image Source: Oxygen Mag
Plies are a classic ballet/barre movement, and a highly effective one at that. By combining them with squats, you take the focus off your quads and emphasize the glute muscles. Your legs still get a good workout, but your butt does most of the work. Definitely a killer movement for a beautiful booty! You can get a good set of dumbbells for this kind of exercises at best price here.
You’ll feel a slight pull in your hips, but this is normal due to your wide stance and outward pointing toes. If you feel hip pain, bring your heels a bit closer together. Keep that posture tight, and you’ll feel the burn in your butt.
Side Lying Hip Extension
Image Source: Health.com
This is an isolation exercise that hits ONLY the muscles in your glutes and hips, making it one of the best for both glute strength and lower body mobility.
This is a movement you want to be very careful with. If you jerk, you could pull a hip muscle, so take it nice and slow. Focus on contracting the hip and glute muscles as you raise and lower your leg, and breathe through the burn. Control is the key to increasing your strength!
So, now that you know what exercises to do, here is the workout:
- Perform each movement for 45 seconds, with 15 seconds of rest between movements.
- For the single-leg exercises, alternate legs on each set (right leg, left leg, right leg, left leg). This will guarantee an even workout on both butt cheeks.
- Once you finish the first round of workouts, give yourself 60 seconds to rest and recover. Repeat after the second and third round.
This is NOT an easy workout, but it is highly effective. You’ll feel the burn in your lower body, but the movement will give you a good cardio workout as well. Push through the pain, and you’ll finish in great shape after 30 minutes!
Circuit #1: Squats, Booty Boxes, Lunges, Quad Hip Extensions, Single-Leg Glute Bridge, Rainbows, Plie Squats, Side Lying Hip Extension
Rest for 60 seconds
Circuit #2: Lunges, Quad Hip Extensions, Plie Squats, Side Lying Hip Extension, Squats, Booty Boxes, Single-Leg Glute Bridge, Rainbows
Rest for 60 seconds
Circuit #3: Plie Squats, Side Lying Hip Extension, Squats, Booty Boxes, Single-Leg Glute Bridge, Lunges, Quad Hip Extensions
Rest for 60 seconds
Circuit #4: Plie Squats, Side Lying Hip Extension, Squats, Single-Leg Glute Bridge
By the time you complete Circuit #4, your legs and glutes should be on fire. Good! That means you’ve pushed yourself hard and shredded those glute muscles.
The beauty of this workout is that you can mix and match the movements as desired, or add weights to make certain exercises harder. All that matters is that you perform the movements with control and proper form and that you push your muscles to exhaustion. You’ll see the difference in your butt in no time!
The results you will get from these exercises won’t only make you look good, they would make you feel good about having a routine as well. This should inspire you in exerting more effort for improving your body along with your health.
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