Move over abs 2017 is the year of everyone wanting to get that ass. It definitely seems to be the thing people are wanting these days especially you ladies. I'm not going to lie I love my peach and can't wait to get it bigger - I wasn't blessed with the curvy figure therefore I am going to grow my own with bigger glutes and bigger back and shoulders (more on those in another post). And as I am also part of team no boobs I thought a might as well get the bum instead haha.
So I thought I would share with you my top 5 exercises that target your glutes and not so much the quads.
1/ Barbell Glute Bridges
The big one ladies and don't be afraid to get some weight on it. I personally find these more effective to getting the glutes than hip thrusts as you can really engage your glutes and push up. I find that my quads come into play a lot more on a hip thrust - I do love a good hip thrust but a glute bridge is more specific.
If you can get a band to wear around your thighs that will help you to focus the squeeze.
You want to initiate the squeeze of the glutes as you lift your pelvis up keeping your lower back on the floor. Drive through the heels and at the top of the movement abduct your legs ever so slightly to hit the outer glutes. The range of movement isn't big but its effective.
Top Tip: Get a mat/towel/protective cushioned sleeve to put between the bar and your hips or it will hurt a lot more than it needs to.
2/ Abduction Machine
Any hip abduction work is going to help so it is always good to get some in your warm up such as laying leg lifts (side) banded crab walks. The exercise I am talking about is using the hip abduction machine at your gym but rather than sitting in the seat you want you want to be just above it. Hold on in front and push out the pads with your legs and slowly bring them in. Again add some weight so it challenges you !
3/ Cable pull thoughs
DO NOT MAKE EYE CONTACT whilst doing this movement it gets weird ;) Make sure you are standing far enough away that your arms can straight all the time. The start of the movement is when you are bent over holding the cable between your legs, slight bend in your knees sending the bum back. Then drive up through the glutes pushing your pelvis up to thrust as you come to standing. Keep your arms straight as well as these are merely there to hold the cable not pull it through.
4/ Glute kickbacks
Well it's in the name ;) I use a cable machine for these but you could replace them with body weight donkey kicks. The main thing you need to remember when you are doing these is that it doesn't matter how high your legs go instead focus on glutes working not lower back. Go to the level where you feel the glutes contract and then release. I like to hold the contraction for a couple of seconds before releasing.
5/ Single leg elevated glute bridges
By elevating the leg you can drive the pelvis up higher increasing the range of movement. Single leg work is really good to make sure each side is fully engaging and you don't end up with one side doing all the work. To make this more difficult you could always add a weight onto the hips but only once your form is perfect.
Before engaging in any of these exercises please make sure you warm up thoroughly with a pulse raiser to get the blood flowing followed by some mobility drills and activation exercises. If you would like me to do a post or video on these please let me know and I will happily help.
I hope you found this interesting and have a go at these in your next glute focused workout - if you need help with form then please ask a PT or Instructor to assist you.
*Also please remember to build muscle you need to fuel it which means you need to eat enough calories. Don't focus on weight focus on your strength :) *