28 October 2016
There's no denying that glutes are in trend right now. Of course, Kim K and Jen Selter are to be blamed for this craziness; even Mila Kunnis, in fact! But the fact remains: people want big butts.
"I love big butts and I cannot lie"
Be it athletes, fitness enthusiasts or models, everyone is simply obsessed with big butts and everyone wants it... TODAY! You'll find many online programmes that guarantee big butts in a month. Yeah, those 30 day challenge kinda stuff. No, it's not that easy.
If you want glorious glutes, you need to work that ass off but that's not all! The key is that it's not about the programme or volume. In order to maximize the outcome of your programme, there's a few things you need to sort out for sure.
1.) Are you using the right exercises for your body?
2.) Are your glutes responding, or some other body part is being compensated
3.) Are you working on the corresponding muscles properly?
These things, if taken care of, will definitely get you closer to that dream butt faster.
For building stronger glutes, you need to keep the following in mind:
1.) Pay Attention to Your Feet
You need to arch your feet, just like in deadlifts and squats. If you don't follow this, your glutes will fire sub-optimally. This is commonly called as glute amnesia.
TIP: In bare feet, find all four corners of the floor with your feet. While maintaining the arch you’ve created, try to pull the floor apart in your squat pattern, emphasizing the base of the big toe.
2.) Activate Your Hip Flexors Before Training
This can be achieved by stretching. When you sit or wear heels all day, the hips can end up very rotated in response to the stress. Consequently, the hip flexors get tight and weak. Most butt-building workouts require a good mount of hip flexor strength to pull hips into flexion. So a good deep hip flexor stretch before you start your workout.
3.) Train Half-Kneeling Positions
If you’ve got chronically tight hamstrings, you cannot touch your toes, or your lower back is tight after runs, the timing of your hips could be off. Half-kneeling positions help correct this issue in the long run, but they also require you to squeeze your glutes in order to stay balanced. You can row, press, chop, and push— all with one knee down.
4.) Maintain Good Posture All Day
“Good posture” is relative and individual. It reflects strengths, weaknesses, fatigue, stress, and confidence level, so the best posture cue is really just to create as much space between your joints as possible. When you do so, your joints are in the most optimal positions for you to be successful at whatever exercise you’re doing. TIP: While standing with feet hips-width apart, make sure your tailbone is pointing down towards to the floor and grind your heels into the floor as you elongate through the crown of your head. Apply this to all of your resisted movements.
5.) Balance Your Strengths
If posture reflects strengths and weaknesses, you can positively affect it by getting your muscles into better balance and, for most people, that means training the posterior line a bit more (calves, hamstrings, glutes, back—all of these muscles are connected along the posterior chain). They usually need a little more attention than their anterior counterparts to keep the body in balance.
The rest of your body has a much bigger influence on your glutes than you might imagine, and you’ll notice that maintaining an arch in your foot allows you to maintain better stability in your lunge, that you resist the compression forces in your back squat by lengthening your spine, and that a few minutes spent on your hip flexors is going to allow you to use your butt on bench day. You’ll to be able to apply these concepts in a number of ways. You better be prepared to get a whole lot better at all your movements. You want glutes of glory? Well, child, you best listen to your reigning glute goddess to get to the promised land.