So what is the best glute building exercise? To be honest there is no ONE glute building exercise but I will be happy to share three of my absolute faves! These three exercises are three that I always personally keep in my workouts and ones that are part of my online program!
WHAT IS THE BEST GLUTE BUILDING EXERCISE?
I wouldn’t be doing you justice if I didn’t give you the WHOLE truth about glutes. The truth is glutes are pesky muscles that require a LOT of effort to build. They are most active during hip abduction, hip extension and hip flexion which means you need to work through all those movements to hit glutes.
Furthermore, glutes are made up of muscle fibres that run diagonally from the hip bone towards your femur (aka your thigh bone). This means they exert the most force when you move your leg away from your body (like in an abduction or external rotation).
What does it all mean?
It means that you ideally want to use a SERIES of good exercises to build your glutes, not just rely on one. You also want to ensure that you are :
- Using good form and technique when using performing these exercises
- And periodically and strategically increasing your workload for these exercises
Yup, that means those in home squat challenges are not effective! If you want good, strong, round glutes you need to challenge your body! Our muscles adapt to stimulus so going heavier, doing more reps, sets etc is important for hypertrophy (aka growth). I can’t stress that enough! You want growth? You have to work for it!
For those of you who are newer to weight training, lost in the gym or not getting results, I would suggest getting a good glute building program. One that take the above into consideration and targets glutes through a VARIETY of exercises.
And now, my three top ‘glute building’ exercises
Again, as I mentioned above, I do not think there is a SINGLE exercise that buildS glutes but a mixtures of good ones! I personally think it’s best to use both compound, multi joint movements with isolated movements to develop glutes.
With that said, if I were to narrow it down to just three essential exercises, I would recommend the following:
1) hip thrust
I would suggest keeping a variety of all above mentioned exercises in your routine (and mixing in a few other good ones like weighted lunges and split squats).
When it comes to glutes (well any muscle in general) know that your genetic make up (like hormones, biomechanics, muscle fibre type) do play a role in how your glutes develop. I find that those who naturally put on good and bad weight easily (aka mesomorphs or hybrid of meso/endomorphs) can develop their glutes faster through proper resistance training. While those naturally skinny or those who carry a lot of bad weight naturally with not much tone, may need to work at it harder and be more picky with exercise selection. (This is something I teach about in my online program)
Lastly, I also wanna note that nutrition and recovery are incredibly important to glute building. If you want to build nice glutes, start with a good diet and adapt a good sleep and recovery habit Without both of these, your muscles will have a hard time growing (trust me on this!)