Could your caboose use a boost? Butt-building exercises not only enhance your assets, they also increase caloric expenditure and stability in the knee and hip joints.
The glutes are comprised of three muscles – the gluteus maximus, medius and minimus. In order to have a well-rounded rear, you must train and target all three.
Perk up your posterior with this do-it-anywhere workout using a mini resistance band.
Resistance Squats. Supersize your squats by adding a mini band to the mix. Positioning a resistance band around the lower thigh causes the lateral glutes to open the hip flexors, which encourages a deeper squat. This technique also prevents the knees from turning inward and the lower back from curving during each repetition.
- Place the band around the lower portion of your thighs, directly above your knees. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
- Apply pressure on the band as you hinge back at the hips and bend deep into your squat. Protect your knees by keeping your body weight in your heels throughout the duration of this exercise.
- Press through your heels to return to the starting stance. Repeat 12-15 times.
Standing Kickbacks. Extensions are a necessary movement for targeting and isolating the glutes. Kickbacks are an essential toning tool for increasing muscle definition, range of motion and speed for activities like running and skiing.
- Stand next to a sturdy surface like a wall or chair, and place the mini band around your ankles.
- Keep your left knee soft and your core tight as your right leg slowly elevates and extend behind you. Squeeze your glute muscle at the top of this move. If you are performing this exercise without a chair for support, it is okay to allow your upper body to lean forward slightly. However, avoid rocking forward and backward with each repetition as this puts strain on the lower back and shifts the focus from your glutes to other muscle groups.
- Return your leg to the starting position and repeat 12-15 times on each side.
Lateral Walk. Don’t let the look of this exercise fool you. It will have the sides of your butt burning after only a few repetitions. The gluteus medius is often neglected in most training routines. This muscle is responsible for hip movement and more specifically, hip abduction, or moving your leg away from your body. A strong gluteus medius helps maintain proper knee tracking when moving laterally.
- Adjust the mini band so it is slightly above your ankles.
- Keep your core tight, knees soft and hips slightly bent as you take a large side step with your right foot. Let your left foot follow. Check your feet to ensure that they are parallel to each other and that your toes are pointed forward for each repetition.
- Continue stepping back and forth to work both legs. Remember to always keep tension on the resistance band so the targeted muscles are doing all the work. Repeat for one minute in total.
- For an added challenge, increase the speed in which you shuffle back and forth.
Repeat this circuit 3-5 times.
If you want results, hold yourself accountable and work your butt off.
Ashley B. Greenblatt is a certified personal trainer and wellness coach. To learn more, visit ashleyblakefitness.com.