Ah yes… the good old string bikini! You would be hard pressed to find a more revealing garment of clothing to showcase a tight, round gluteus maximus. But to really rock it, you need to know a few things.
First and foremost, let’s address anatomy. The “glutes” are comprised of the gluteus minimus, medius and maximus. Together, they make up the largest muscle group in the body.
The technical movement patterns associated with the glutes are hip extension and hip abduction. Hip extension occurs when you move your back leg upward toward your body and hip abduction occurs when you move your thigh outward.RELATED: RECOMMENDED PLANS FOR YOU
This is very important information to know because if you do not move through these ranges of motion, you will not be rockin anything except maybe a beer gut.
It’s always a matter of doing the right movement pattern with quality and finesse. If you train sloppily then you can expect to look sloppy when you are done.
Hopefully what I just went over has sunken in. When you know about how muscles function, it is a lot easier to choose appropriate exercises to work them. I’m now going to give you some of my favorites.
Pay attention to detail when doing these and never let your ego take over.
We’re going to kick this thing off with a great glute builder that doubles as a great inner thigh toner.
Straddle a kettlebell with your feet about shoulder-width apart and toes facing forward. Bend your knees to lower yourself down and grab the handle with your hands side by side.
Lift the bell off the floor as you come to a standing position and hoist it up in front of your chest. Grip the handle on the sides and bring your elbows in by your ribcage.
Move your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width and turn them out about 15 degrees.
Keep the kettlebell pressed close to your chest and slowly lower yourself down by bending your knees. Stop when your elbows are inside your thighs and hold for a full second.
Stand up in a smooth motion and fully extend your legs. As you do this, squeeze your glutes forcefully for a full second, then repeat the whole exercise.
Make sure to keep your back perfectly vertical to the floor at all times. Act as if you are sliding down a wall.
Do not let your knees go past your toes on the descent. If they do, step your feet a little wider apart.
Lastly, don’t forget to breather properly. Take a big inhale on the way down and exhale forcefully on the way up.
The single leg Romanian deadlift is by far one of my favorite exercises in general; let alone for the glutes. You will once again need a kettlebell.
Straddle the bell with your feet shoulder-width apart and parallel to each other.
Bend your knees to lower yourself down and grab the handle with your hands side by side. Stand up in one fluid motion and let your arms hang straight down in front of your body.
Carefully lift your left foot and let it hover a few inches off the floor. Keep your back straight and lats tight as you bend forward at the hips. Lower the bell toward the floor as you raise your left leg in the air behind you.
Once your leg is about parallel to the floor, reverse the motion to get back to the starting position. Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement for a full second. Repeat for a set of reps and switch sides.
Feel free to maintain a slight bend in the knee of your planted leg.
Do not round your back when you lower yourself down! You will be dealing with a back ache hours later if you do. At the bottom of the movement, try to form a straight line from your shoulders to back heel that is parallel to the floor.
When coming up, feel free to lightly place your foot down if you cannot balance.
For an added challenge, hold the kettlebell with only one hand. It doesn’t matter which one. Some find it easier going with the same hand and foot and some find it easier with the opposite hand.
The Cossack squat is a secret weapon in my arsenal of jaw-dropping, eye-catching glute centric exercises. It gets its name from the famous Russian dance you might have seen Fonzie do in an old episode of Happy Days.
Get into the same starting position as a goblet squat and remember to hold the kettlebell close to your chest. Now step your feet out to your sides into as wide a stance as you comfortably can.
Keeping the bell still, bend your left knee and move laterally. As you do this, fully extend your right leg and ground your heel into the floor while pointing your toes straight up.
Hold for a second, move back to the starting position and repeat on your right side. Continue to alternate back and forth until you complete an even number of reps on both sides.
Do not hinge forward from the hips when you do Cossack squats. You want to keep your upper body in the frontal plane throughout. This means just move side to side and not forward.
The lateral walk will require the use of a rubber fitness loop. Use the kind that is wide and thin so it sits nicely on your flesh.
Carefully slide your feet through the loop and flatten it out on the sides of your lower legs just above your ankles. Move your feet apart until you’ve taken away all the slack.
Bend your knees slightly and step to your left with your left foot. Take a step to the left with your right foot, but not so far that you lose the tension on the band.
Place your right foot down and continue to walk laterally for 20 to 40 yards. Take a breather and then walk back to your starting point.
Try these on for size and see what happens. If you need further assistance, don’t be a stranger. Give me a shout and I’ll be glad to assist.