Before you grab some resistance bands or make your way to the squat rack on glutes day, consider picking up your kettlebell instead. These wreaking balls with horns are secretly waiting to give your tight end an absolute burn.
You can easily maneuver kettlebells to do bilateral (two-sided) and unilateral (one-sided) work, which makes them a great challenge for your glutes and lower body. For example, you can do a goblet squat by holding the kettlebell with both hands at the horns, or you can front rack the bell with one arm and test your strength on one side.
And because of their dynamic nature, you can easily flow from one move to the next, which means less rest and higher intensity. Think kettlebell swing to cleans and cleans to lunges.
Here's a 20-minute kettlebell workout for your glutes. These exercises call for higher reps, which helps with building muscle and endurance, so choose a kettlebell weight wisely.
Check out more of our 20-minute workouts here — we’ve got something for everyone.
Move 1: Kettlebell Clean to Front Lunge
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and place a kettlebell a few inches in front of you to form a triangle with the kettlebell and your feet on the ground. Hinge your hips back and hold the kettlebell with your right hand using a loose grip.
- With your shoulders above your hips and a flat back, hike the kettlebell between your legs. Avoid rotating your shoulders.
- As you straighten your legs to stand, use power from your hips to punch the kettlebell up to chest height as you pull the right elbow back to clean the weight to a front rack position.
- As you rack the kettlebell by your right shoulder, take a big step forward with your right leg and lower into a lunge, forming 90-degree angles with your front and back legs. This is one rep. Complete 15 reps before switching sides.
Be sure to keep your elbow close to your body by imagining you're holding a piece of paper or a small towel between your armpit.
Move 2: Kettlebell Lateral Lunge to Curtsy Lunge
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold the kettlebell with your right hand in a front rack position.
- Take a big step to your right side and sit back into your right hip for a lateral lunge, making sure your right knee is directly stacked over your right ankle. Your left leg should be straight, toes facing forward.
- Press through your right heel to stand back up and return to the starting position.
- As you return to the center, step your right leg behind and to your left so your thighs cross, bending both knees as you lower toward the ground for a curtsy lunge. Make sure your left knee is aligned with your left ankle.
- Press through your left heel to straighten your legs and return to the starting position.
- This is one rep. Complete 15 reps before switching sides.
Move 3: Single-Leg Deadlift to Knee Raise
- Start with your feet hip-width apart and hold the kettlebell with your right hand in front of your leg.
- With a slight bend in the right knee and your core tight, hinge your hips back as you kick your left leg behind you, tracing the kettlebell down the front of your right foot. Your torso should be almost parallel to the ground and your back flat. Your left leg should be led by squeezing your glute and pushing your heel towards the back wall. Remember to keep your hips square throughout the entire movement.
- Drive through your right foot to bring your left leg back to the center, drawing your left knee up toward your chest, and cleaning the kettlebell to the front rack position on the right side. This is one rep. Continue for 15 reps before switching sides.
You can place one hand on a wall or chair to help you balance.
Move 4: Staggered Stance Deadlift
- Start with your feet hip-width apart and hold the kettlebell with your right hand in front of your hip. Trace your right foot back and align your toes with your left heel, then step it out to the right side. This is your staggered stance position.
- Keeping your back flat and your shoulders down, hinge your hips back until your torso is parallel to the ground, tracing the kettlebell down the inside of your left foot. You should feel the tension in your hamstrings.
- Straighten your legs to stand back up, squeezing your glutes and locking your hips at the top.
- This is one rep. Continue for 20 reps before switching sides.
Move 5: Kettlebell Goblet Squat Jump
- Stand with your feet together and hold the kettlebell at the horns with both hands at chest height.
- Jump your feet out to the sides and land in a wide squat with your feet shoulder-width apart and hips parallel to the ground.
- Then, jump your feet back in together to the starting position. This is one rep. Complete 20 reps.