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Butt Workouts: Build a Better Behind!

Holly Smith

By: Holly Smith, M.D. - Osteopathic Medicine, B.S. - Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer,

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

butt workouts

You're sculpting your arms and legs and core. But are you doing butt workouts? Having a toned, rounded butt has become the newest sign of strength and fitness.

I mean, who didn’t envy J.Lo at the Super Bowl halftime show, looking fit and fabulous at the age of 50!

To get a great looking butt, the muscles that really deserve attention are the glutes.

The glutes make up the largest and most powerful muscle group in the body.

Building these muscles will create an overall fit physique and provide you the strength to perform everyday activities easier and more efficiently.

Keep reading to learn more and find out our favorite butt workouts for women!

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The Importance of Weight Training

At the Fit Mother Project, the goal is to create exercise and nutrition programs for busy moms to build strength, lose fat, and be in the best shape of their lives for years to come.

Resistance training large muscles, like the glutes, goes a long way in achieving these goals.

As women age, lean muscle mass decreases, which causes a drop in metabolism.

Increasing muscle mass in the glutes will increase overall lean body mass. This allows you to burn more calories by raising your metabolic rate.

So you will be burning more calories not only when you are working out, but also when you are at rest.

In addition, resistance training helps improve your cardiovascular health and decreases your risk of developing chronic diseases.

Plus, it can increase bone mineral density, which lowers your risk of osteoporosis, and also decrease chronic issues like low back pain.

Feel Great AND Look Great

Strength training has been found to have a number of benefits in women that go beyond just looking great.

For one, weight training has been found to improve body image and health-related quality of life in women.

This is important because it will keep you motivated to work out, and will also improve your mental health as well.

The glutes are made up of three different muscles — the gluteus minimus, gluteus medius, and gluteus maximus.

These muscles work to move your hips and legs and allow you to stand up, sit down, jump, rotate your hips, and move side to side.

Strong glutes help you maintain good balance in any activity, from running to walking upstairs or even just standing.

If you have weak glute muscles, more stress is placed on the hamstrings, knees, and calves.

Over time, this can lead to overuse injuries and chronic joint pain.

Building strong glutes is important to avoid injury and will help decrease pain in the lower extremity joints.

Top 10 Butt Workouts

First and foremost, a proper warm-up is important for any workout, but especially those that are working large muscle groups such as the glutes.

Warming up the glutes will increase blood flow to the area and start stretching out the connective tissues around your muscles so that they are primed for the main workout.

For all strength training workouts, it’s best to start out with dynamic stretches and exercises, which will prime your muscles for more intense movements.

Studies have shown that dynamic warm-ups offer performance benefits when compared to static stretches for exercises that require power and agility.

Glute Warm-Up

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and slowly bend forward.
  • Push your hips back as far as you can until your chest is parallel to the floor.
  • Pause, and then push your hips forward and come up to stand.
  • Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement.
  • Repeat this 10-15 times to warm up the glutes.

Main Exercises

1.Barbell Hip Thrust

  • Sit on the floor and place your upper back against a box or bench with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  • Place a pad across your hips with a barbell on top of the pad.
  • Squeeze your glutes and raise your hips until they're in line with your body on the bench.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat.
  • Aim for 3 sets of 8-10 reps.

2. Butterfly Hip Thrust

  • Lay on your back with your palms flat on the ground.
  • Bring your feet together in front of you, bending your knees to press the soles together.
  • Squeeze your glutes to raise your hips straight up in the air, then lower your hips back down to the floor.
  • Complete 3 sets of 8-10 reps.

3. Single-Leg Deadlifts

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand with your palms facing the front of your legs.
  • Hinge forward at your hips 90 degrees as you lift your left leg behind you.
  • Your body should be parallel to the floor from your head to your left foot with your arms hanging down.
  • Then engage your glutes and hamstring to return to the standing position.
  • Aim for 10-12 reps. Then switch sides and repeat.

4. Step Up Lunges

  • Stand in front of a box or step.
  • Place your right foot on top of the box or step with your weight placed on the center of your foot.
  • Push your hips back and then stand straight up onto the box, squeezing the glute of your right leg at the top of the movement.
  • Hold this position while keeping your hips and shoulders square and your body tall.
  • Your left foot should come up to the box but try not to place this foot on the box so that your power is coming from the right leg.
  • Push your hips back again, and slowly lower your left foot to the floor, taking about three seconds on the way back down to the starting position.
  • Repeat for 8-10 reps on the right, then switch to the left side for 8-10 reps.
  • Once you've perfected your form on this movement you can add dumbbells to make the move more challenging. Again, aim for 3 sets of this movement on each side.

5. Dumbbell or Kettlebell Squats

  • Begin with bodyweight squats if you are new to this move.
  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and squat your hips down and back while you bend your knees.
  • Try to keep your weight in your heels.
  • Then explode back up through your heels to a standing position.
  • Once you have perfected the form you can try holding dumbbells by your side or a kettlebell in front of you to add weight to the movement.

6. Walking Dumbbell Lunges

  • Stand while holding a pair of dumbbells and take a step forward with your left foot.
  • Push up into a standing position, bringing your right foot forward.
  • That’s 1 rep.
  • Now step forward with the right foot and repeat.
  • Alternate the leg you step forward with so that you’re “walking” with each rep.
  • Walk for 6 steps, then turn around and walk back.
  • Complete 3 sets of this moving exercise.

7. Back Extensions

  • Hook your feet into a back extension station, turning your toes away from each other so that your feet are at 45-degree angles from your calves.
  • Keeping your back naturally arched, lower your torso until your body is bent 90 degrees.
  • Contract your glutes and raise your torso back up until it’s in line with your lower body.
  • Repeat for 8-10 reps, aiming for 3 sets.
  • Once you have perfected the form you can hold a weight to add extra resistance.

8. Bulgarian Split Squat

  • Stand a couple of feet in front of a bench or step, with your back to the bench.
  • Bring your right leg behind you and place the top of your right foot on the bench and grasp your hands in front of you.
  • Bend your left leg and lower your body into a lunge.
  • Your left leg should be bent at 90 degrees with your knee tracking over your foot, but not beyond your toes.
  • Contract your glutes and push your body back to the starting position for one rep.
  • Repeat 8-10 reps then switch and repeat on the other side.
  • Once you have perfected your form and gained strength with this exercise you can add weight by holding dumbbells by your side during this movement.

9. Kettlebell Swings

  • Bend at your hips and hold a kettlebell with both hands at arm's length down in front of you.
  • Rock back slightly with the kettlebell between your legs.
  • Squeeze your glutes, thrust your hips forward forcefully, and swing the weight to shoulder height.
  • Reverse the move to come back down with the kettlebell between your legs and repeat 8-10 times for 3 sets total.

10. Side-Lying Clam

  • Lie on your left side on the floor and bend your knees 90 degrees.
  • Stack your knees and feet on top of each other.
  • Place one hand on your right side and push through your right heel as you rotate your right hip open, raising your right knee until it points to the ceiling.
  • The movement should look like a clamshell opening.
  • Lower the right knee and then repeat 8-10 reps on this side.
  • Then flip over so you are lying on your right side and repeat the exercise on this side for 8-10 reps.
  • Aim for 3 sets on each side.

Get A Great Looking Booty With These Awesome Butt Workouts

These 10 butt workouts are an awesome way to build a strong and sexy booty.

The optimal frequency for most body parts, including the glutes, is about 10-15 sets per week.

So you can add three or four of these exercises as part of a leg day, or as part of a full-body workout, and do this three times a week.

The butt workouts listed above are great for building strong glutes.

This will not only have you looking amazing, but they will also make you stronger and more confident as you show off a firm and toned backside!

Holly Smith
Holly Smith

Writer, The Fit Father Project & Fit Mother Project

Holly is an osteopathic physician, runner, triathlete, and fitness and nutrition enthusiast.

She is board certified in nephrology and internal medicine, has a bachelors degree in dietetics and is a certified personal trainer with NASM-PES certification.

Holly has completed four full ironmans, twelve marathons, countless half ironmans, olympic distance triathlons, half marathons and numerous other road races.

Holly joined the Fit Father Project in May 2019 as a regular writer, contributing articles on health, wellness, exercise, and nutrition.

She has also recently qualified for the 2020 World Championships for Ironman 70.3, in New Zealand!

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If you’re a busy mom who wants to finally lose weight, get healthy, and actually keep the pounds off for good, this is the simple program you’ll love sticking to…

Our Fit Mother 30X Program (FM30X) is the answer you’ve been looking for. Inside FM30X, you’ll receive:

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*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on butt workouts.

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