Your glutes are made up of three primary muscles: the gluteus maximus, gluteus minimus and gluteus medius. If you want a huge, powerful butt, use our list of the best glute exercises to do so.
The gluteus maximus is by far the largest of the three and one of the strongest muscles in your entire body. It is responsible for hip extension, which is the pushing of your leg back to the rear. This is the "power generator" of the glutes.
The gluteus minimus and medius are beneath your gluteus maximus and are in charge of hip abduction and become engaged anytime the body moves side to side.
Because we sit so much, the state of the world's glutes have become a nightmare. Men and women every where now struggle from flat-ass syndrome. This condition not only looks bad in jeans, but also contributes to the chronic problems of low back pain.
Make sure you are apart of the solution and not the problem by doing these exercises regularly.
The 10 Best Glute Exercises
Best Glute Exercise #1: Squats
Squatting is not only one of the best glute exercises; squats are essential to proper mobility and hip function. It is also seen as the king of all leg lifts, and for good reason.
Whether you use weight or not, squatting regularly opens up your hips and works every muscle of the legs; especially the glutes.
Best Glute Exercise #2: Lunges
Lunges are one of the best exercises for toning and strengthening the entire lower body. They also require you to engage your core to remain stable and upright which is an added bonus.
Like the squat, lunging is also a functional movement pattern, which is why it is so high up on our list of the best glute exercises.
By doing lunge variations you can challenge your gluteus muscles from various angles and intensities. By adding weight and making minor changes to the direction of the exercise, you can get a fuller, rounder butt.
Best Glute Exercise #3: Quad Hip Series
The quad hip series is great for the core and for working the glutes and hips from multiple angles. We included it on our list of the best glute exercises because it is great for improving hip health and for testing the endurance of the glutes.
Best Glute Exercise #4: Glute Bridge
Glute bridges are great for building endurance in the glutes and for activating them through a prolonged contraction. Glute bridges are on our list of best glute exercises for their ability to engage the abs and low back.
Try finishing each leg workout with 3 sets of 30 second holds and then slowly work up to 2 to 3 minutes per hold. You will not be disappointed by the burn.
Best Glute Exercise #5: Hip Thrusters
Squats and lunges are kind of like the bench press of glute exercises and thrusters are like the curls of glute exercises.
This exercise has been argued by guys like Bret Contreras "The Glute Guy" as the best glute exercise you can do because it allows you to directly target the glutes with progressive loading.
We like to call this the "humping" exercise because it essentially requires you to hump a barbell. It may look horrible air-humping a barbell at the recreation center, but who cares? Your ass will look way better than everyone else's if you do them.
Best Glute Exercise #6: Straight Leg Deadlift
Straight leg deadlifts or "Romanian Deadlifts" are on our list of best glute exercises because they also target the hamstrings and lower back. You can't use as much weight as you could with a traditional deadlift, but you can give your glutes an intense workout none the less.
Best Glute Exercise #7: Deadlifts
Deadlifts and squats are definitely the most intense glute and leg exercises you can do. Deadlifts require an incredible amount of glute strength to press the hips forward in order to get the weight off the floor.
They also require the glutes to fire and contract hard at the top of the movement to ensure the body remains stable under the load of the bar.
If your goal is to build a large set of glutes, than deadlifting is a must.
Best Glute Exercise #8: The "Good Girl- Bad Girl" Machine (Abductor Machine)
The "Good Girl-Bad Girl" machine is often dominated by female trainees because it look a little suspect and feminine. However, guys who avoid this machine are missing out on a great tool for working the outer part of the glutes.
We chose to include the GGBG machine or the "abductor machine" on our list of best glute exercises because of its unique ability to really target the harder to stimulate outside glute muscles.
The GGBG machine is a great high rep finisher for really blasting the glutes at the end of an intense leg workout.
Best Glute Exercise #9: Kettlebell Swings
The Kettlebell Swing is one of the best glute exercises because of its ability build power and endurance in the glutes.
The kettlebell swing trains and mobilizes the hips and lower back through the hinging patter; causes the glutes to engage when firing forward; and, provides them with a hard contraction at the top of the swing.
Swings are a great glute workout for both power and endurance. They can also be used as a stand alone glute exercise or as an intense finisher.
Best Glute Exercise #10: Hyper-Extensions
Hyper-extensions are a great glute exercise and like the swing, can be done for strength or for endurance using very high rep ranges. The best way to engage the glutes during this exercise is to squeeze and pause at the top of the movement to maximize the contraction of the glutes.
Conclusion: We firmly believe that this represents the best glute exercises you should be doing to keep your butt high and tight as they say.
To ensure you are treating your butt properly, make sure you are adding a couple of these to each workout and at least one finisher like the Good Girl-Bad Girl Machine, Kettlebell Swings, or hyper-extensions.