Resistance bands are a great way to strengthen your glutes and challenge your thighs, hips, quads and hamstrings in a whole new way. So follow along with Jordan in the video below as she shows you moves that isolate your glutes so you know how to zero in on toning your booty.
Importance of Strong Glutes
So you probably know that it's important to work you glutes to tone and tighten your booty, but there are tons of other benefits to exercises like squats and glute bridges.
First, a little anatomy lesson. What we refer to in gym lingo at glutes are actually three separate muscles — gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The gluteus maximus is the largest of the three and the main "butt muscle." It's also a major driving force of your legs (specifically, it draws your leg back as you walk or perform other activities that require that movement).
So what does all that matter? Because you can't just target your gluteus maximus to sculpt your best booty. The two supporting muscles are also important to keep it "high and tight," so to speak.
But the smaller two muscles can be hard to isolate, which is where the resistance band comes in. Because you require a lot more stabilization from surrounding muscles to do squats and other exercises with a resistance band, you recruit all three gluteal muscles to execute the exercise.
When all three of these muscles are strong and working together, they do a lot for your body, including:
- Providing functional strength for daily activities like walking and climbing stairs
- Injury prevention (especially in your knees and hips)
- Improved balance (which can also help with injury prevention)
- Helping prevent back pain
- Better athletic performance
- Improved posture
Other Booty-Toning Moves to Try
OK, so besides the exercises Jordan demonstrates in the workout above, what else can you do to strengthen your glutes? Here are some ideas to add to your lower body routine to keep things interesting.
Lunges: Stand, and then take a step a few feet forward. Bend both knees to 90 degrees. Press off your front foot and return to the start. Once you’ve mastered the basic lunge, move on to other lunge variations.
Hip Thrusts: Hold a barbell (loaded or unloaded) over your hips and lean your upper back against a weight bench. Bend your knees and place your feet by your butt. Press through your heels and lift the weight off the floor until your back is parallel to the floor. Lower back down with control.
Deadlift: Using either a loaded or unloaded barbell, stand in front of the bar with your feet facing forward and about hip-width apart. Hinge at your hips and pick up the bar. Don’t arch your back, and neither bend nor lock your knees. The effort should come entirely from your glutes and hamstrings.
Speed Skater: Stand on two feet, and then jump the left foot out wide to the left as you swing the right foot back behind the grounded leg. At the same time, swing your arms so they are opposite to the feet. So if your left foot is grounded, your right arm swings forward toward that foot, and vice versa.
Frog Jump: Start in a low squat with your feet turned out. Take your hands to the floor between the feet. Jump up into the air. When you land, take it back down to a low frog squat with the hands on the floor.
Fire Hydrant: Start on all fours with your toes curled under and your feet flexed. Line up your knees directly under your hips and your shoulders directly over your wrists. Keep the legs about hip-distance apart. Keep the 90-degree bend in the right leg and slowly lift and open that bent leg outward and then back in.
Banded Clamshells: Start by wrapping a resistance band around the outside of your knees. Then lay down on one side, stacking your knees on top of one another, with your hand on your hip. Keep your bottom leg on the floor with your knee at a 90-degree angle. Externally rotate your top knee open while keeping your top foot on top of your bottom foot the entire time. With control, continue opening and closing your knees.
Stability Ball Hamstring Curl: Lie on the ground on your back. Place your ankles on top of a stability ball. Bridge your butt up to the sky with your arms and hands placed firmly on the floor. With control, roll your feet in toward your butt and back out again, all while keeping your hips thrusting to the sky.
Step Ups: Using a stable weight bench or raised platform, place one foot on the platform in front of you so that your knee is at a 90-degree angle. Activating your glutes, step up onto the platform and drive your opposite knee up. Step back down and switch legs.
More Booty-Building Resources
Why let your glute-strengthening efforts stop at a single workout? If one of your goals for 2019 is to sculpt a bangin' backside, you'll want to check out these other helpful articles.
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