Do you have a nice, shapely, firm badonkadonk, or does your ass look more like a hot air balloon? If you want a more attractive bum, the exercises here will help.
A recent study showed that the exercises most effective for developing your gluts are squats, kickbacks, lunges, stepups and bridges (described below). To improve the effectiveness of any of them, add weights while doing them. Perform each exercise slowly, pause for a full 30 seconds at the top of the exercise, and then return to the original position slowly.
Squats: For a basic squat, start with your feet flat on the floor, about shoulder width apart. Slowly bend your knees until your hips are even with them (knees bent at a 90º angle), then return to a standing position.
If you feel unsteady or are unable to do a full squat and return, do a partial squat, keeping hips above the level of your knees.
If you want a more challenging squat, try one of these variations:
• Crab squat—stand with feet slightly further apart than shoulder width and feet pointed to the side (plei position) and squat as above.
• One-legged squat—stand against a wall or place an exercise ball between a wall and your lower back. Lift one leg slightly off the ground. Balance yourself with the other leg, and then squat as above.
Kickbacks: Kickbacks exercise your gluteus maximus, but they can also stress your lower back if you do them incorrectly. Always brace (contract) your abdominal muscles when doing kickbacks. If you feel any pulling or pain in your lower back, stop the exercise and make sure your form is correct before proceeding.
Option 1: Lie on your stomach, head down and hands resting on the floor above your head. Contract your abdominal muscles by pulling your belly button in toward your spine. Contract your gluts and slowly lift one leg 10-15º off the floor. If you feel discomfort or pulling in your lower back, you’ve lifted your leg too high. Hold the position for 30 seconds, and then slowly lower it.
Option 2: (easier on your back) Get on your hands and knees. Contract your abdominals and gluts, and slowly raise one leg until it is in line with your back. Keep your knee bent at a 90° angle.
Lunges: Step forward with one leg. Keeping your front foot planted on the ground and your back straight, slowly lower the knee on your back leg toward the ground. Keep the knee on your front leg behind your toes. Don’t let the back knee quite touch the ground. Push up with your back leg to return. Keep your feet closer together to work your quads in your thighs; having them further apart works your gluts and hamstrings more.
Stepups: Step up onto a step with one leg, then push down with that leg and bring the other leg up. Step back down by bending the forward leg.
Bridge: Lie on your back on the floor with your knees bent. Contract your abs and gluts and raise your hips until your back is straight. This exercise isolates your glutes and strengthens your lower back.
These five exercises work that ass to tone and firm it and they strengthen your core, improving your balance and coordination so that you move it beautifully, too.