Women of all shapes, sizes, and ages can benefit from butt workouts.
Not only is a firm, toned butt sexy, it is also essential in supporting your thighs and core in bodybuilding and athletic performance and competition. The butt consists of three primary muscles: the gluteus maximus, the gluteus medius, and the gluteus minimus.
Each of them are connected to the hips, facilitating movement in the legs, lower back, and abdomen. Medical researchers of the study, “Gluteal Muscle Activation During Common Therapeutic Exercises” in the “Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy” found that squats, deadlifts, lunges, side-lying hip abductions, and lateral band walks worked butt muscles most effectively.
To get the toned butt you desire, always start your training session with some light cardio. Elliptical machines, stairs (or StairMasters), and arc trainers are great exercises to start training and toning your butt.
Ladies, it is essential to attack your butt and train it with heavy weights. Although there are some genetically gifted souls, for the rest of you, cardio alone isn’t going to get your booty looking round and feeling firm and tight.
These are five of the best butt workouts for women:
1. The Old School Deadlift, Squat, and Lunge
Some female bodybuilders swear by old school techniques that might bring back memories of high school gym class. Just ask Pauline Nordin, trainer and diet coach for the Nordic version of “The Biggest Loser” and star of “The Butt Bible,” a workout video by NBC/Universal. She said, “Those exercises allow you to use the kind of weight necessary to build the sort of muscle tissue that ultimately gives the glutes a nice, round shape.”
Pauline also suggests that butt training should be part of your normal leg routine, and that you need to top off your strength training with good stretches to increase your flexibility and stimulate your muscles into reaching a full range of motion. This is one of the butt workouts that Pauline recommends:
- Lying Down Straight Leg Raise: 3 sets of 15 to 20 reps
- Super-Wide Barbell Squat: 5 sets of 10 reps
- Bridge (one leg at a time): 3 sets of 10 reps
- Bridge (both legs): 2 sets pf 20 reps
- Barbell Split Lunge: 3 sets of 8-10 reps
- Sumo-Style Barbell Deadlift: 3 sets of 20 reps
- Seated Abductor Machine: 3 sets of 10-15 reps
- Super-Wide Barbell Squat: 3 sets of 10 reps
2. Hip and Leg Raises and Extensions
If you simply cannot bear the thought of squats and deadlifts, there are plenty of alternative butt workouts designed for women like you. Hip and leg raises may not sound very intense, but they’re exactly the kind of movements your butt needs to get toned.
“Women’s Health Magazine” suggests starting with a hip raise that involves lying on your back with your keens bent and your feet flat on the floor.
- Raise your hips so your body forms a straight line from shoulders to knees.
- Lift one knee to your chest, then lower back to the start.
- Lift the other knee to your chest, and continue alternating.
You can also do single-leg hip raises by extending one leg until it’s in line with your opposite thigh, and pushing your hips upward. One great variation to these exercises is to use an inflatable exercise ball under your feet, calves, or knees.
3. Kettlebells and Barbells
Don’t be intimated by all the heavy equipment at the gym; it’s only there to help you achieve your fitness potential! Kettlebell swings are intense, fast-paced, and work your whole body.
Your butt, however, initiates and dominates the bottom half of the bodily motion. Try this kettlebell workout, but first watch this video to understand proper form:
- Start in a low, wide squat position with a kettlebell in between your feet.
- With your chest puffed out, abs tight, and lower back pinched, powerfully contract your glutes and swing the kettlebell upwards with two hands until it’s in-line with your face.
- Under control, lower the weight back to the ground, stick out your butt, and immediately complete the next rep.
Watch this video – Kettle Bell Swing
Although barbell squats aren’t anything new, they are incredibly effective in working your backside at the gym. They also build leg strength and help improve your ability to balance.
Try this barbell workout after you watch this video to safely execute the moves:
- Stand shoulder-width apart with a barbell across your traps.
- Stick out your butt, maintain a flat back, and lower down until your thighs are parallel with the floor.
- Drive up through your heels, and return up back to start.
Watch this video – Fitness Tips with Chrissy Zmijewski: The Barbell Squat
4. At-Home Floor Work
To achieve a shapely behind, you’re going to need to take your workout beyond the gym and incorporate butt-shaping moves into your daily routine. Here’s a few at-home exercises that you can do comfortably in your own living room:
- Side-lying leg lift: Lie on your side with your legs extended out straight. Your lower arm can rest under your head, your top arm on your hip. Lift the top leg up while keeping your hips steady and facing forward – do not rotate backward. Lower down and repeat. For an added challenge, wear an ankle weight.
- Clam Shell: Lie on your left side on the floor with your hips and knees bent 45-degrees. Your right leg should be on top of your left leg, heels together. Keeping your feet in contact with each other, raise your right knee as high as you can without moving your pelvis. Pause, then return to the starting position. Don’t allow your left leg to move off the floor.
- Toe taps: Lie on the floor with your arms on your sides. Lift your feet, bending both knees to 90-degrees so your thighs are perpendicular to the floor. Slowly and quietly tap your left toes to the floor, then your right. Alternate tapping feet for one minute. If you feel any lower back pain, don’t bring your toes all the way down.
5. Yoga and Pilates
Yoga has seemingly endless health benefits, so it should come as no surprise that a toned butt is one of them. These are a few yoga poses ideal for toning the butt:
- Warrior 1 and 2
- Chair pose
- Bridge pose
- Locust pose
- Upward-facing plank pose
- Single-legged plank pose
One common Pilates move involves lying on your side and reaching one leg behind your body. This works your butt, and can also be done while lying over an exercise ball or standing upright. Always execute Pilates-style leg extensions with slow, controlled movements while keeping the torso stable and the glutes squeezed. Try doing three sets of 15 repetitions for leg and hip extensions, and then switch legs
The best way to attack your booty from all angles and avoid workout boredom is to incorporate all five of these butt workouts for women into your fitness routine. They all complement each other nicely by working your butt in different ways at varying levels of intensity.
Another popular butt workout that you can access online at home is Vitality Advocate’s “Bubble Butt Workout for Women.”
Always make sure to warm-up with some light cardio, then stretch your hip flexors before training your glutes, because hip flexors get overworked during all the time you spend sitting down And remember – a better butt is just one part of a toned and healthy body.
Eating a healthy plant-based diet and strengthening the other muscles in your body are equally important to complement your fabulous fanny!
To get more ideas about butt workouts for women, watch this video – 10 MIN BOOTY BURN // No Equipment | Pamela Reif
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To find out more, visit the website at V3 Bodybuilding – Butt Workouts for Women