There’s a huge hype over squats right now, especially on social media: pictures of girls posing from the back with headlines like want this booty? Better squat! There’s no doubt that squatting is one of the best glute workouts, but if you have joint or mobility problems that prevent you from performing this compound move, there are other glute workouts that give you great results – sometimes even surprising results that differ from squats. This article explains a few of these workouts and how to do them.
Single Leg Glute Bridge
This one is a glute killer! Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor near your glutes, hip-width apart. Keeping your knees in line, extend one leg. On your exhale, squeeze your glutes and push your hips up toward the ceiling as high as you can go. Pause, then lower until your glutes hover right above the floor, and repeat without touching the ground. You should quickly feel the burn in your booty.
Begin on all fours with your knees hip-width apart and your wrists stacked over your shoulders. With a pointed toe, extend your left leg behind you and slightly to the left side. It should be level with your spine. Keeping your core tight and leg straight, slowly lower your leg to tap the floor. Squeeze your glutes as you lift the leg back to starting position, then slowly tap the floor about a foot to the right. Return to starting position to complete the rep. Repeat for 45 to 60 seconds before you switch legs. This exercise activates so much muscle tissue due to the changing of your foot position with your extended leg.
Not only does this build your glutes, but it also makes a great stretching workout. The perfect time to do this exercise is at the end of your leg workout—when all of your leg muscles are tight.
Stand upright and hold a barbell in front of your body. Have a slight bend in your knees, maintain a flat back, bend at the waist, and slowly slide the weight along the front of your legs until it reaches your shins. Hold the stretch for 1 second, powerfully contract your glutes, and accelerate back up to starting position. Unlike a traditional deadlift, your hips/glutes don’t move vertically —keep them stationary and emphasize the stretch behind your knees during the downward part of the motion. By putting this move at the end of your leg routine it really gives you that feeling of working on your glutes whilst stretching your legs out, and increasing blood flow which helps with recovery and soreness.
You heard it! The Stairmaster is looked down upon from those who hate cardio, but who says you have to do the same boring walking upstairs for 20 minutes straight? The Stairmaster is a great tool for building glutes. You can do all sorts of positions like: walking sideways, walking backwards, skipping a step, crossing legs, etc. These different positions work your glutes from different angles, providing an all-around glute workout while also burning calories! Get the best out of this exercise by focusing on your glutes and squeezing them as you climb.
Just imagine one of the times you had to walk up a long flight of stairs to get somewhere. By the time you get to the top you are exhausted, sore, tired, and your legs might feel a little bit like jello! That’s because your glutes are being worked like crazy while climbing up all of those stairs.
Okay, so squats may be the King of glute exercises, but not everyone can perform them due to lower back pain, joint pain, or some other kind of injury that prevents you from performing the full exercise. There are alternative workouts for your glutes, and some of them might even hit your glutes more than squats do!
This is because a lot of these moves are isolation workouts, making sure most if not all of your effort is coming from the glutes. Hopefully you have learned that just because you can’t do squats, doesn’t mean you can’t work your way to a bigger, more firm booty!