News : Strong glutes: benefits and how to work them
Having firm legs and buttocks has become a widespread goal, especially among women. The canons of beauty have changed. A few years ago the object of desire was to show off a very fine silhouette, but now the curves rule. Some well defined, bulging buttocks it is the goal of many training routines.
Women have gone from focusing their efforts on cardio and strength exercises using their body weight, to using machines and adding more and more load. What are your routines like when the target is on the glutes?
Benefits of training glutes
Traditionally, differences in training have been registered between genders: they focus more on the upper body (abs, pectorals and arms), and they focus on the lower body (legs and buttocks). But such differences are gradually being diluted, and proof of this is that having a marked abdomen has become a recurring objective also in women.
On the other hand, the importance of working the different muscle groups to gain efficiency in sports performance, and not only attend to the aesthetic factor. In the case of the glutes, having them strong is essential to gain agility, security and explosiveness in the movement. You will notice it when you go for a run, especially on slopes, but also in other activities that require races and jumps.
The glutes are actively involved in hip extension and abduction, as well as in its external rotation and pelvic retroversion. Specifically, the gluteus maximus is the main extensor, and the gluteus medius stabilizes the pelvis.
One muscle that often goes unnoticed is the iliopsoas or iliopsoas muscle, which is located in the abdominal cavity and joins the upper body with the lower body. Spending many hours sitting shortens it, weakens the buttocks, accelerates the appearance of back pain and makes it difficult to maintain a correct posture. Buttock exercises help to stretch it, which will have positive effects.
We insist that such benefits go beyond the aesthetic factor, as this is just one more consequence of increased health and well-being. That is why training the glutes is important for men and women.
How to get strong, firm and round glutes
If you are looking to increase size, we have a guide to gain muscle mass that will help you achieve that bulging look. Whether you want to increase it or not, some general tips for firm and round buttocks never hurt
- Respect recovery times. Alluding to research results, a single set of 12-15 reps with the proper weight can efficiently build muscle for most people. You have to rest a full day between each specific muscle groupIn addition to listening to the body: if any exercise causes pain, you have to stop.
- Don’t forget the attached muscle groups. As obvious as it is, the more times it must be remembered: the different parts of the body do not function as watertight compartments. You have to start from the fact that you will not work your glutes in isolation with any exercise, but do not give importance to connected muscles, such as quadricepsit will be of little use to you.
- Take advantage of the variety. With each glute exercise you will work the largest, the smallest and / or the middle one more deeply. Also you will involve other muscle groups, especially legs and abdomen, so vary the routines. There are many exercises to do without equipment, but there are many accessories to use at home. In the gym you can also use different machines.
- Take care of the technique. The more weight and movement you intend to incorporate into each exercise, the more you will have to take care of how you do it. It is about minimizing the risk of injury.
Best exercises for strong glutes
We said that variety is a key factor in exercises for firm glutes. We compile a wide selection to fulfill different objectives: the activation of muscular tension, the stretching of muscles and the promotion of circulation in the buttocks. We also leave you a routine video with 14 key exercises:
The ones we propose are basic exercises that will be very affordable if you are a beginner. As you gain form and increase your level, you can introduce more repetitions in each series.
- Buttock lift. Lie on your back with your knees bent so that your heels are about 20-30 cm from your buttocks. From that position, do pelvic raises so thighs and lower torso are aligned, and then back down. You can do variations of this exercise, such as going up and down in two steps or staying up for a few seconds doing gentle movements.
- Leg movement in quadruped. Get on the floor in quadruped, that is, with your hands and knees supported. Perform leg raises alternately, and take advantage of the variety that you can introduce: keep it straight, bend the knee up, make lateral movements, complete circles, etc.
- Leg movement on the side. They are exercises more focused on the hip, in whose extension and abduction the gluteus actively intervenes. Lie on your side and perform leg raises with variations: in a row, in several beats or keeping up with short movements. Then repeat with the other leg, lying on the other side.
The hip thrust It is considered one of the best glute exercises. They are pelvic lifts for which you need a box or bench and a bar with weight plates. The bar is resting on the pelvis and, when lifting, you must support your upper back, neck and head on the top of the box or bench.
Apart from this, there are other exercises that you can do. In some of them, like squats, the dumbbells raise the difficulty. If you are a beginner, you can do without them.
- Normal squats. You can keep the dumbbells raised at chest height, or raise and lower your arms in sync with the knee bend.
- Sumo squats. The feet should be a few inches apart beyond shoulder height. Don’t arch your back as you lower your glutes, and keep the dumbbells held in front (at pelvic level).
- Strides forward and back. Complete sets in which you alternate one leg and the other, and hold the dumbbells to each side as you perform them.
- Dumbbell deadlift. This exercise mimics the weighted barbell grip inside the “cage”, as the square structure of gyms is popularly known. From an upright position with your legs slightly bent, lower your back as if you are bending down to pick something up from the ground (taking care of the position). Hold the dumbbells and keep your arms lowered in front of you.
With elastic band
The elastic is an easy-to-use, versatile and inexpensive accessory. Wide open the range of possibilities, and not only in glute exercises, so if you usually practice your routines at home we advise you.
Regarding this table, the first two proposals will be more effective if you use two bands, one placed above the knee and the other above the ankles.
- Squats hard. The movement is that of the squat, but you don’t have to straighten up when you do it. Is about exert force also to the sides, as if you wanted to spread your legs wider.
- Lateral knee raise. Lie on your side with your legs bent and, from that position, raise your upper leg as high as you can. You must notice the work of the bands in the area, and alternate one leg first and then the other.
- Lateral leg stretch. Stand tall with your knees slightly bent and your legs shoulder-width apart. From that position, perform lateral flies first with one leg and then the other, noting the tension in the band. If you find it difficult to keep your balance, or in a complementary way, you can take lateral steps, first to one side and then to the other.
- Rear leg raise. The band should be placed on the middle of the thigh. Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart, and rest your hands on the wall. Keeping the opening so that the bands do not lose tension, perform back leg raises, first with one and then with the other.
With the elastic bands you can also perform glute bridges or upward kicks from quadrupeds, in addition to many other exercises.
Some of the machines in the gym will be especially useful for working your glutes. We leave you some examples, but remember to properly adjust the load in each one and control the execution of the movement well. If you are not very familiar with the machines, ask the center staff.
- Hamstring machine. It is a classic of gyms with which you will take a guided tour and in which you can adjust the weight. Lie on your stomach, with your calves under the pad, and push until your legs are at a 45 degree angle.
- Leg press. You will work especially the legs, but also the gluteus. If you use a lot of weight, try not to fully extend your legs to prevent the muscles from relaxing and transmitting all the tension to the knee.
- Low pulley machine. It helps you to do back leg raises like the ones we have explained to you with the elastic band. Wrap the velcro rings around your ankles, adjust the weight, and repeat with one leg, then the other. You can hold onto the machine for balance and avoid arching your back excessively.
- Step machine. It mimics climbing stairs and is not among the most used, but it has multiple benefits. Tones especially legs and buttocks, but it also keeps the cardiovascular system in shape, helps you lose weight, and improves coordination.
- Elliptical bike. An elliptical session works more than a dozen muscles in the upper and lower body, including the buttocks. It is a very versatile low-impact activity because it allows you to configure several programs, and it also improves cardiovascular efficiency.
In short, showing off strong and beautiful buttocks will not only improve the image, but the capacity of the muscle group. In addition to intervening in the extension, abduction and external rotation of the hip, as well as in the pelvic retroversion, it is connected with the psoas. Your regular stretching will prevent back problems and poor posture.