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The best exercises for your glutes

The best exercises for your glutes

More Icing for your Buns

Whoever you are having peachy buns is important. Not just for appearance sake but for full body functioning.

The glutes maintain stability at the hip joint and are fundamental to human performance, not just Instagram selfies.

I am sure you have seen hundreds of people crab walking around the gym with a band just above or below their knees. Pulsing away in a half squat.

This is all well and good. But if you want to grow your glutes, rather than just activate them, its time you put some weight on the bar and upped the anti.

Bands have a use. They can be great for activating the muscles we so often neglect, especially if your job involves a lot of sitting.

By using bands during a warm up for hip thrusts, squats and side walks your glute medius will have to spring into action to keep your knees from caving in. This is an important function if you want to avoid any knee pain and get full range of motion in your chosen exercises.

So lets get down, quite literally, to the nitty gritty of booty growth.

The squat

The humble squat has long been known as the holy grail of glute gains.

Keep your knees pushed out, go down nice and slow and squeeze to get back up. You can have the bar high or low on your shoulders, whatever is comfortable. Try and maintain a neutral (straight) spine and avoid any rounding in the lower back.

It might take some mobility work to get ‘ass to grass’ as they say in the weight lifting world, however box squats can be a great place to start when it comes to making sure you have the right technique and they will still lead to big gains!!

Hip thrusts

As far as bang for you buck goes this exercise has been proven to activate more of your glute muscles than anything else.

It is probably the only time you can condone using a bar pad in the gym as well.

Try alternating between lying fully on the floor and having your back raised on a bench as it will only lead to more adaptations. Don’t forget to push your knees out and really push your hips through at the top of the lift.

Bulgarian split squats

Essentially a lunge with your back leg lifted onto a bench or step. These can also be used as a great activation exercise.

Make sure you go through full range of motion, getting a nice deep lunch and your back knee down to just above the floor, really focus on pushing the hips forward and pushing yourself back up with your glutes.

So much of making sure you have correct technique and correct muscle activation is actually paying attention to your body whilst you exercise!

Romanian Deadlifts aka RDLs

Deadlifts with straight legs. Guaranteed to get your hamstrings and glutes burning.

Approach this exercise with care and don’t load the weight on until you are comfortable, if you are new to this exercise be prepared for some serious DOMS. Similar to pull throughs on the cable machine so if you don’t quite feel ready for a barbell yet the cable machines can be a great place to start.

Focus on control through the movement. These are called deadlifts for a reason, the bar shouldn’t bounce back up off the floor. You need to make sure you keep your lats engaged to prevent your back from rounding and keeping all that booty building tension in your posterior chain!


If you look at the sprinters and jumpers of the sporting world they will always be the ones with the best bums, I can guarantee it.

Why not add in a super set to some of your squats. You could jump onto a box, or you could just do standing vertical jumps.

If you have the luxury of a track in your gym or have taken to working out outside why not add in a few sets of 30m bounds? As usual start of small and progress. There is a lot of research showing that bigger is not always better when it comes to jumping and muscle development, just something to bear in mind.

As with everything when it comes to progression and adaptation it is important to increase the weight slowly and gradually introduce new exercises into your programme.

Remember great things take time.

If you persevere with correct technique, keeping your core tight throughout the movement and gradually overloading the body there is no way you can fail to get the bum you desire. So if you have reached a plateau and really want to grow give the exercises above a go!


the author

Izzy Jeffs

Izzy is a British champion javelin thrower and has competed in two Commonwealth Games finals. She has competed for Great Britain on several occasions. Izzy is a personal trainer and spends a lot of time training in the gym, building muscle. When she is not training at the track or in the gym, she is eating. You’ve got to eat big to get big! .