Your glutes, which happen to be your body’s largest and most powerful muscle group, deserve more attention. Generally called the “posterior chain,” your glutes contract to help move your hips, powering you up, down, and every direction in between. Another awesome fact about the glutes? Since they’re so large, working them helps increase your metabolic rate as well – major bonus.
Too many people sit on their butts way too long throughout the day. Some men think that general lower body exercises take care of the glutes, so there’s no need to focus on them – they’re wrong. It’s about time you start giving your backside the attention it deserves. You’ll feel stronger, your pants will fit better, and you’re box jumps will be more powerful than ever.
We’ve rounded up the five best exercises to build your glutes
Barbell hip thrust. The barbell hip thrust could be the king of all glute exercises, activating both the upper and lower glutes more than any other exercise. Place your back up against a bench with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Put a padded (the more padding, the better), loaded barbell across your hips. Squeeze your glutes and push up through your heels until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Lower down slowly and repeat however many designated reps you’d like.
Barbell squat. You can’t argue with a squat when it comes to building muscle mass in your posterior chain. Yes, it’s a quad-heavy exercise but it helps build your backside as well. Hold a barbell across your back with an overhand grip. Keeping your chest high and your head up, push your hips back, and bend your knees until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor. Make sure your knees never pass your toes, push back up to the starting position, and repeat.
Barbell deadlift. The deadlift is a fantastic glute exercise because it works the entire backside of the body. Perfecting this move will definitely help with a more ‘sculpted’ look of your rear end. Load a barbell then roll it against your chins. Bend at your hips and knees to lower down and grab the barbell with an overhand grip, hands at shoulder-width. With your back naturally arched, pull your torso up and thrust your hips forward as you stand up with the barbell. Squeeze your glutes tightly at top then lower back down. Repeat.
Walking single-leg Romanian deadlift. Another take on the effective deadlift, this move is sure to get those glutes fired up and burning. Grab a dumbbell in each hand and step forward with your left leg so you enter a split-stance position. Keeping the front knee bent slightly, bend at the hips as much as you can without losing the arch in your bag. Your dumbbells will be on either side of your front foot. Engaging those glutes, straighten your torso up and step forward with the opposite leg. Repeat the moves for the desired amount of reps.
Bulgarian split squat. The Bulgarian split squat causes little tears in your glute muscles as you lower down. Your body repairs them over a few days, making your muscle fibres bigger and stronger than before. Hold a barbell on your back as if you were about to do a squat. Rest the top of your right foot on a bench behind you, then bend your knee down to 90-degrees. Bend your left knee to lower your body until your right knee nearly touches the floor, making sure your torso is upright the whole time. Push back up through your heel and repeat for however many reps you’d like, then repeat on the other side. You can also perform this exercise with dumbbells in each hand.
It’s time to wake up those glutes - add these moves to your workout routine!