Building strong, round glutes has been a fitness trend for a couple of years now. While some women are looking to have a larger, more shapely posterior, it isn't just the aesthetic benefits that they're gaining from it.
Some would argue that your glutes are the most important part of your body in which to build strength, and there are many good reasons to do so.
Your glutes do so much to help you move, sit, stand, and walk. Taking care of them and making sure they're strong and stable has more than just aesthetic benefits.
Why strong glutes are important
You have 3 different types of gluteus muscles. The gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus.
Your gluteus maximus is what gives your bum its shape. It helps to keep us upright when sitting or standing and helps you with moves that generate force from your lower body (squats, climbing stairs, running, and jumping).
Your gluteus medius helps with the rotation of our legs, as well as lifting our legs out to one side.
Your gluteus minimus helps your gluteus medius with stabilization and rotation of your legs.
Having strong glutes helps reduce your chance of injury, improves athletic performance, posture, and balance.
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How to strengthen glutes
Here are some exercises that will help you strengthen your different glute muscles to make sure you're feeling balanced. You can do all of these exercises for 10-20 reps each with a 30-second rest in between.
1) Hip lift/Glute bridge - Lay on your back with your knees bent up towards the ceiling. Tilt your pelvis down until your lower back lays flat against the floor. Lift your hips up to the sky and engage/squeeze your glutes at the top. Lower your hips to the floor and repeat.
2) Side stars - Lay on one side with your bottom hip touching the floor. Lift your top leg towards the ceiling without twisting your toes upward. Lower your leg to start position and repeat.
3) Squats - Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart with your toes pointing out at a slight angle. Hinge at your knees in your waist and squat down as if you're about to sit in a chair. Keep your weight in your heels on both the up and down motion. This is important to engage your glute muscles.
4) Single leg deadlift - Shift all of your weight to one foot and keep a slight bend in both knees. Keeping your shoulders back and your back straight, hinge at your waist, and reach your hands towards the floor. Your opposite leg should swing straight back behind you. Return to start position and repeat.
5) Curtsy lunge - Stand feet shoulder-width apart. Swing one leg behind and around to the outside of the foot you're going to be lunging down onto. Drop your center of gravity (sternum) towards your front knee. Keep your weight in the heel of your front foot as you lunge down, and then stand back up. Return to start position and switch legs.
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When doing any sort of strength training make sure to take 1 full day off of the same muscle group before working it again. For example, if you train your glutes on Monday, wait until Wednesday to train them again.
Enjoy strengthening your glutes, team!
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