Let’s be honest here for a second. The only reason that girls go to the gym is to get a nicer butt. Now before you tell me that I am wrong, and that I am sexist, and that I won’t never amount to nothing; let me tell you that this proclamation is based on extensive research that I have conducted on instagram. Nothing like a little bit of science to silence the haters.
What you may not know is that training your gluteals may be one of the most beneficial things that you do for your strength, posture, and for decreasing low back pain and imbalances in your lower body. Ivan already wrote a great article on this subject back in the day which I have conveniently linked right HERE!
The problem with Ivan’s post is that it leaves out hands down the best glute exercise known to man, and this is something that I will not stand for.
The exercises that I see most women doing at the gym for their glutes usually involve bodyweight, spandex and at least 4 weird old guys watching from various corners of the room. I am not one of those guys I promise.
While these exercises may make you feel like you’re on the way to being a Instagram fitness legend they’re not going to work. “But Mark!” you protest “I squat!” I am sure you do my dear and I appreciate the effort, but unfortunately squats, and even maximal effort squats are not the best way to tone your tush.
I am currently reading a 675 page long book that is exclusively about training your gluteals. It is called ‘Advanced Techniques in Glutei Maximi Strengthening’ and is written by the aptly nicknamed ‘Glute Guy’ Bret Contreras.
Why am I doing this you ask? I am doing this so that you don’t have to. You’re welcome.
Here is the ultimate glute exercise that Bret invented that you should be doing that you that will make you faster, stronger and give you the booty that you have longed for ever since you saw Beyonce in the music video for ‘Survivor’.
As you have just seen, the American Hip Thrust is simply a glute bridge preformed with the shoulders elevated on a bench, feet on the floor, and a padded barbell balanced on the hips.
The gluteals are optimally activated in a position of hip hyperextension. This is a position that cannot be achieved safely in a squat or dead lift as you will slowly destroy your lower back rendering it impossible to pickup your future grandchildren…which may not be a bad thing.
Therefore it makes sense that an exercise that places the hips safely in hyperextention while maximizing the load will result in the best results.
How to begin.
1. Start off doing the hip thrust on the ground without a bench or a barbell doing 4 sets of 10-15 reps squeezing as hard as you can at the top of each rep for 2-3 seconds. The main goal here is to learn how to contract your glutes and groove that hip thrust pattern.
2. Once you have mastered the art of squeezing your butt really hard graduate to doing hip thrusts off a bench without a barbell. Use the same rep scheme and the same tempo as before.
3. Finally you can add in a padded barbell. Make sure that as you increase the weights that your form remains intact and that you are able to fully contract your gluteals at the top of each movement.
4. As you get stronger you can increase the weight and decrease the number of reps that you do ( example: 4 sets of 6 reps) But remember that you should not be preforming 1 rep maxes with this exercise.
There are many other exercises that are excellent for developing strong glutes, but the weighted American Hip Thrust is one of, if not the best, and therefore you should consider including it in your program. It has definitely helped me go from having no ass to having Nikki Minaj jealous of me in a few months. If I can do it you might be able to as well! #motivation