Everyone loves a nice, strong booty but getting one takes work!
The first challenge many face on the road to booty gains is muscle activation. A great percentage of our days are spent, not generating power through our bums but sitting on them! For many, getting those gluteus muscles firing properly takes some persistence with activation drills. Try one or all of these at the beginning of your workout:
- Prone Scorpions (8 reps on each side)
Lie facedown with legs together and arms out to a “T.” Squeeze one glute to initiate the movement, then swing it over toward the opposite hand. Touch toes to the ground and return to the starting position. Focus on keeping the opposite shoulder and hip on the ground.
- Birddog (6 reps on each side)
Start on all 4’s, keeping the core tight by drawing the belly button toward the spine. Extend opposite arm and leg while keeping torso still and straight. This exercise has a bonus of also being a great core activation drill!
- Supine Bridge (10 reps)
Position feet slightly wider than hip-width, push through the heels, and raise hips up. Squeeze your booty at the top position and hold for a second or two. Then lower to just above the ground before repeating.
- Bowler Squat (5 reps on each side)
Balance on one leg, keeping that knee soft (slightly bent, not locked out). Push your booty back and use the opposite leg for a counterbalance as you reach down and across the body with your opposite arm. Keep your back straight! This exercise has an added benefit of reinforcing proper hip-hinge technique.
- Wall Marching: Glute Isometric Hold (2 reps on each side, holding each rep for 5 seconds)
The next step is building strength and size in the glute muscles. Here are a few of my favorite exercises.
- Barbell Hip Thrust (3 sets of 8 reps)
For everything you need to know about hip thrusts, Bret Contreras is your guy! Check out this article.
As a side note, this may not seem like the kind of movement you want to do in gym…in public, but trust me! The benefits far outweigh the potential awkwardness, and when in doubt, just avoid eye contact!
- Banded Squats + Side Steps (2 sets of the following sequence)
Step 1: Place mini band above or below the knees (I prefer below)
Step 2: Take 10 steps sideways to your left, maintaining tension in the band at all times.
Step 3: With legs a little wider than hip-width, perform 10 squats.
Step 4: Take 10 steps sideways to your right, maintaining tension in the band at all times.
Step 4: With legs a little wider than hip-width, perform 10 squats.
- Bulgarian Split Stance Squat (3 sets of 8 on each leg)
Start with this exercise unloaded- Good luck!
- Kettlebell Deadlifts (3 X 10 Reps)
Sit back, keep your heels down, and back straight. Push through your heels while coming up and squeeze your booty at the top.
Also, check out Bret Contreras’s (Known as the Glute Guy) 30 Day Ultimate Better But Challenge!