This week’s Best Butt Exercise is in a category of its own – because it’s one of the best butt exercises I know for building a bigger butt through exercise.
Hip thrusts look funny (heck, the name is even funny), but the effects that they will have on your butt is no joke.
They are similar to glute bridges, but in my opinion they work even more of the butt. In my mind, hip thrusts are the bigger brother to glute bridges.
Exercise: Hip Thrust
Muscles worked: Glutes
Jolie Recommends: 3 sets of 10, with heavy resistance to build muscle mass.
Difficulty rating: 5
Effectiveness rating: 10
Best Butt Exercise #25: Hip Thrust
For this exercise, you’ll need a bench or firm support which is roughly at knee height.
You’ll be resting your shoulders, head and neck on the bench while you do the hip thrusts, so you’ll need a sturdy base.
If you are serious about this exercise you’ll want to get yourself a flat bench to work from that will be a stable base. (These are super versatile and can be used for all kinds of exercise too!)
If you’re practising at home, you can get the feel of this exercise by practising using the side of a bed initially – but I wouldn’t recommend this kind of support for any serious attempts at this exercise, as it is too unstable.
How to Do the Move
- Start sitting on the floor next to your bench with your shoulders resting on the side of the bench.
- With your knees bent, place both feet flat on the floor in front of you, about hip-width apart.
- Tighten your core by engaging your abdominal and back muscles to hold the back in a straight, neutral position.
- Squeezing the glutes, push the hips up towards the ceiling while your shoulders are supported by the bench.
- Use your glute muscles to lift the hips up until they are level with your knees, then push a bit further to get hip hyperextension.
- Lower your hips back down to the ground, keeping the glutes engaged the whole time. This is one rep.
Perfecting Your Form
- Flex the glutes as hard as you can, ensuring to push up enough to get a slight hip hyperextension
- The back needs to be kept flat, not overarched or rounded – this will require your core to be engaged
- Squeeze the glutes throughout the whole exercise
- Your knees should be at 90 degrees at the top of the movement
Once you master the form of this exercise, you can add weight. This is where the hip thrust exercise really shines.
The gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in the body and very powerful. This exercise allows you to train and utilize this muscle – you’ll be surprised just how much weight it is capable of moving.
You can add weight in the form of dumbbells or a resistance band, but the easiest way is by holding a weighted bar or barbell across your hips. You can pad it with a towel if this is uncomfortable.
Progress slowly with adding weight, ensuring that your form is perfect before you load up with any weight.
Try for 3 sets of 10 on this exercise, with 1 minute rest time between sets (or more if you are lifting heavy weight).
You can also mix it up with this one – going to longer reps and fewer sets.
This exercise is seriously so good that it doesn’t really matter too much how you train (in terms of numbers of sets and reps), it just seems to follow the general ‘more is better’ rule.