Booty Work – Booty Work – Booty Booty Booty Work!!
There must be something in the air because lately, everywhere I go I’m hearing women discussing the topic of shaping up their derrieres! Some have approached me to inquire about what they should be doing, why they just can’t get that thing lifted, what are my favorite glute exercises, etc. Frankly, I can’t think of a better topic to discuss! The idea of a firm, lifted, tight butt seems to be the object of every woman’s desires and I’m no exception! To answer these questions, I think we need to take a trip back in time to high school anatomy class and get back to basics.
Remember that there are three muscles that primarily make up the gluteals:
- Gluteus Maximus – this is the largest and outermost of the gluteal muscles and forms the bulk of your rear
- Gluteus Medius – this is largely covered by the gluteus maximus
- Gluteus Minimus – this is the smallest and deepest of the gluteal muscles
In order to shape the perfect glutes you have to work all three of these muscles, which means targeting the booty from many different angles. This sounds complicated, but its actually really simple. Most of our basic beginner exercises allow you to hit all three of these target areas. First, let’s take a look at the required movements:
• Gluteus Maximus – worked through extension of the thigh
• Gluteus Medius – worked through adduction and lateral rotation of the thigh
• Gluteus Minimus – worked the same as the gluteus medius.
Now… How do we incorporate these movements into an exercise? With the basics! Here are my favorite exercises to work that booty in entirety.
I know, right? I’ve heard so many people list reasons and excuses galore about why they can’t/don’t want to squat, but here’s the bottom line…. If you want the perfect behind, you cannot skip the squat! Not only do squats burn more calories than most other exercises, but squats innately release more Growth Hormone than any other resistance exercise. So what does that mean for my butt? The release of these hormones produces muscle growth. The more muscle in your bum, the closer you are to perfection.
Whenever you are performing your deadlifts, you should be squeezing your butt on the way up. Although, deadlifts do not target the butt specifically, they do target several different muscle groups including the glutes and hamstrings. In addition, deadlifts also work to improve your posture, which does enhance the appearance of your booty. The photo demonstrates deadlifts performed with a resistance band, but I actually prefer dumbbells for this exercise or a kettlebell.
Lunges are an incredible workout for your legs and butt. They can be performed in so many different ways and at many different angles to target different gluteal areas. Some of my favorites are walking lunges, side-to-side lunges and front-to-back lunges. If you’re a beginner, stationary lunges work too!
Step-ups are one of my all time favorite lower body exercises. You can really feel these working your glutes, your quads, and your hamstrings, and you can perform these in a variety of ways. You can use a step, a chair, a bench, or whatever you can find and you can add weights, a twist, a side-kick or a kick-back to your step for added intensity. These are amazing!
5. BOOTY CARDIO!
We’ve talked before about how you cannot just do resistance exercises and expect to get dramatic results. But if we’re going to do cardio, why not cardio that also works your booty? Cardio exercises that are efficient include stairs and running. These exercises work the gluteus maximus and assist in melting off that fat layer so you can show the muscle underneath. Don’t forget your cardio!
The number of sets and reps of these exercises will vary with your individual fitness level. I would suggest starting with 2 sets of 20, then gradually increasing to 3 sets of 15, 3 sets of 20, and adding some weights or a resistance band when you feel that it is getting too easy for you to complete your sets.
For a more in-depth lower body workout, go to my Exercise Videos tab in the main menu and watch my “At Home Lower Body” video for a lower body workout you can do just about anywhere.
As always, feel free to shoot me a line if you have any questions! 🙂