The Best Tips and Exercises To Help Grow Your Glutes
by Evelyn Valdez·
Although most people’s fitness goals have to do with getting healthier or stronger, some have more specific aesthetic goals, like building a bigger booty! Many women, aside from wanting to get stronger, have the goal of growing bigger glutes. There’s nothing wrong with that, however, it is a lot harder to achieve than you may think…
Growing stronger and bigger glutes requires patience, commitment, and hard work. We’ll help you get on the right track by giving you some of the best tips for growing your glutes, plus a list of the best glute exercises you should do on your leg days!
Tips for growing your glutes
Knowing exactly what to do to help grow each muscle in your body is a science, but nothing that you can’t learn!
To help you get there, here are some tips for growing bigger glutes:
Perform glute activation exercises
Since your glute muscles are a large muscle group on the back of your thighs, it can be difficult to fully engage them in your workouts. You use these muscles throughout the day to stand up, sit, and move around, so they’re likely tight and unable to work through the full range of motion.
So, if you’re planning on training your glutes on a given day, make sure to include a few glute activation exercises in your warm-up routine. Here’s how you can successfully activate your glute muscles:
Before you start warming up, you can use the foam rolling technique to help loosen your glute muscles. Simply find a foam roller, put it on the floor, and roll your glutes over it at different angles so that the weight of your body adds to the tension.
Static glute stretches are a perfect warm-up because they help lengthen your muscles and prepare them for your workout. Some static stretches you can try are the seated figure-four stretch, the pigeon pose, and the seated twist.
Finally, add a couple of dynamic glute stretches! These stretches mimic actual movements that you’ll be doing in your workout, making them perfect to fully activate your glutes and get your blood flowing.
To make the most out of your dynamic stretching, make sure to include a lateral (sideways) movement and a sagittal (forward and backward) one. The best way to perform dynamic stretches is by adding a high-quality resistance band into the mix to maximize activation, like UPPPER Resistance Bands, so make sure you have one!
Focus on progressive overload
Progressive overload is a strength-training practice that involves gradually and consistently increasing the amount of resistance in your workouts to make your muscles grow as they get stronger.
If you don’t follow the progressive overload principle and instead stick to the same pair of dumbbells or the same number of plates in your cable machine, your muscles won’t be able to keep progressing past that level and instead, you’ll find yourself in a training plateau, even risking losing the muscle that you’ve already built.
So, to avoid getting stuck in a single fitness level, make sure you’re always giving your muscles a new challenge to face as soon as you feel like you’ve conquered the last one. You can add more weight, reps, or sets to make the exercises more difficult so that your muscles keep growing!
Follow the rule of thirds
When it comes to training your glutes and making them grow, there’s a popular technique that lifters use known as the rule of thirds. This rule involves training your glutes three times a week with a variety of different resistances and exercises.
In the rule of thirds, one-third of the exercises follow a horizontal path (cable kickbacks, hip thrusts), one-third follow a vertical path (squats, lunges), and one-third follow a lateral/rotary path (fire hydrants, lateral band walks). Your glutes help your hip move in all directions, so it’s important to make sure you’re training all angles equally.
Additionally, the rule of thirds also involves doing one-third of the exercises with a heavy load and lower reps, one-third with a medium load and medium reps, and one-third with a light load and higher reps to maximize growth. This technique will definitely challenge your glute muscles, so give it a try!
Master the correct form
Having bad form while doing strength-training exercises isn’t only dangerous because it can result in injuries, but it also leads you nowhere. It’s a hundred times better to perform 5 reps of any exercises with good form than 15 with bad form.
Going through the full range of motion of a glute exercise will ensure that you’re fully engaging and training them instead of compensating and having to recruit other muscles to do the work. And this is true for any strength-training exercises, not only glute movements, so make sure to practice your form and technique!
Allow for proper recovery
Last but not least, even though you’re working hard at the gym, the real magic happens when you’re not there. At rest is when your body will begin the recovery process of your muscles, repairing the damage and building new muscle tissue.
If you don’t allow for proper recovery and instead train your glutes two days in a row, you’ll risk overtraining them and straining your muscles, making it harder for you to go back to the gym next time. So make sure you get enough rest, get at least 7-9 hours of sleep, and fuel yourself properly every day!
Best glute exercises
We’ve picked our favorite glute exercises so that you can add them to your lower-body workouts and grow your glutes in no time!
Cable glute kickback
This exercise hits all gluteal muscles, making it perfect for when you don’t have enough time for a dedicated routine!
How to do it:
- Place an ankle strap attachment on a low pulley, then stand in front of the machine and wrap the attachment around your left ankle.
- Hold onto the machine, bending your right knee for stability, and begin the movement by lifting your left foot off the floor as you extend your left leg behind you as far as you can.
- Hold the top position while you squeeze your glutes, then lower your foot and repeat.
- Finish your reps and switch to the opposite side.
This squat variation is perfect for your home workouts because you can do it with just your body weight, or with a kettlebell, if you have one!
How to do it:
- Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart and toes slightly pointing out while holding a kettlebell with both hands close to your chest.
- Begin the movement by squatting down as you bend your knees and push your hips back until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
- Pause for a second to squeeze your glutes while you keep your back straight, then go back to the standing position and repeat.
Banded hip thrust
All banded exercises are great because the tension becomes greater as you reach the top part of the movement, and hip thrusts are particularly great for this.
How to do it:
- Secure a long resistance band on the floor in front of a bench with both ends tightly pressed against the floor.
- Get on the floor and under the band as you place your upper back and shoulder blades along the edge of the bench, with your knees bent and your feet on the floor.
- Engage your core and begin the movement by thrusting your hips up until your thighs are parallel to the floor, fighting against the tension of the band.
- Hold the position for a moment while your squeeze your glutes, then lower your hips and repeat.
This deadlift variation emphasizes your glutes and hamstrings instead of your quads, helping you maximize growth at the back of your thighs.
How to do it:
- Place a loaded bar on the floor and stand in front of it with your feet hip-width apart, then bend at the hips to grab the bar with an overhand grip just outside of your thighs. Your upper body should be near parallel to the floor.
- Keeping a slight bend on your knees, begin the movement by lifting the bar along your thighs until you're standing straight.
- Pause for a moment while you squeeze your glutes, then lower the bar and repeat.
Bulgarian split squats
Split squats are an excellent quad-strengthening exercise, but this variation puts an extra emphasis on your glutes!
How to do it:
- Stand about two feet in front of a bench or stable surface (facing away from it) with your feet hip-distance apart.
- Place your right foot on the bench behind you and place the top of your non-working foot on the bench so the ankle is hanging off the edge.
- Check to make sure that your feet are roughly hip-distance apart or slightly wider. Being directly behind your front foot will make balancing difficult, so you may need to hop or move your front foot to find a well-balanced foot placement.
- Once you found your ideal foot placement, engage your core, keep your chest high, take a deep breath, and begin to bend your left knee so that your right knee and ankle naturally bend as you move down. You should feel a stretch in the front of your back-facing leg and in the glutes of your front-facing leg.
- Once your left quad is roughly parallel to the ground, use the back foot for balance and drive through your front foot to raise your torso back to the starting position. Focus on using your left quad and glute to power back up.
Grow bigger glutes with the right tips
If your main question is how long it takes to grow glutes, well, it depends on how you approach your training sessions! Just know it'll take time, months, even years – but be patient! There’s nothing better than seeing your body changing for the better, but the way to achieve this is by following the right tips and performing effective exercises that will take you closer to your fitness goals.
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