Today I’m reviewing a specialized glute kickback strap for use with cable machines at the gym.
If you haven’t seen these before, they’re great for use with cable pulley machines if you do common glute-targeting moves like kickbacks, donkey kicks, etc.
They work by forming a better attachment point to your foot/heel, which I think allows for more optimal engagement of the glutes when doing these kind of moves (particularly when compared to the traditional ankle strap cable machine attachment).
IPR Fitness Glute Kickback PRO Review
Last Updated: 7 Jan 2021
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Name: IPR Fitness Glute Kickback PRO “Patented”
Available From: Amazon, in men’s or women’s sizes; either as a single strap, or as a matching pair.
Manufacturer: IPR Fitness
Jolie’s Rating: 4 out of 5
IPR Fitness’ Glute Kickback PRO : An Overview
IPR Fitness make several versions of glute kickback straps, and this review covers the ‘PRO’ version, which appears to be their mid-range offering. The lower tier kickback strap is the ‘LITE’ version, and higher spec product is the ‘Kickback X’.
All of these straps are specialized pieces of exercise equipment designed to activate and workout the gluteal muscles in place of a traditional ankle cuff when using a cable machine (or even resistance bands if you have a suitable anchoring point and system to connect the straps to).
Superior to the Ankle Cuff for Glute Exercises
Glute straps are beneficial to ankle straps for a few reasons – they transfer resistance from the strap connection point more directly to your heel/foot.
If you’re trying to activate your glutes, a common cue that you might have heard with most glute exercises is to “push through your heels“, and these kind of straps greatly help with that. Plus, they’re a lot more comfortable than having something tug at your ankle and slide up your leg or shin.
How It Works
The video below shows IPR Fitness’s glute kickback strap in action with cable kick backs on a cable machine at the gym, as well as how easy it is to put on over the top of your shoes:
The strap itself secures low around your foot on the outside of your shoe, and can easily be adjusted by Velcro as shown.
Because a part of the strap sits under the sole of your shoe, the strap as a whole is held quite securely and provides an effective anchor point to pull the resistance through the sole of your foot.
There is an attachment point on the toe-end of the kickback glue strap, where you attach your resistance, which is usually going to be the hook of your cable machine. If you’re planning to use this with resistance bands at home, you’ll need to have a set that have the appropriate connection, i.e. a hook or something that can loop around the D shackle on the Glute Kickback PRO.
The Good & The Bad
- Innovative yet simple – solves a major flaw of the ankle cuff when doing glute exercises.
- Small and lightweight, can easily fit in your gym bag to take to the gym.
- Works the glutes, especially for those who struggle with glute activation.
- Ethically made in the USA and to high-quality military grade standards.
- Expensive. However, you will get good use out of it if you incorporate the exercises shown regularly.
- Need equipment to use it – either a gym cable resistance machine, or resistance bands with clips.
- Only one connection point on the toe-end of the strap.
- You only get one strap unless you buy the pair.
Because this piece of gym kit is pretty specialized, it’s mainly niched to a just a handful of exercises, but you can also feel free to get creative.
The main go-to booty building move that the Glute Kickback PROs are going to be used for are as eluded to by the name – glute kickbacks.
You’re not limited to one particular move though, you could also try kickbacks on various angles, similar to the rainbow leg lifts exercise, in a standing position. Experiment to see what hits your glutes best!
I think you could also give some moves like standing hip abductions out to the side, even though there’s not a purpose-built side attachment point. It looks like the way this product is fitted around the foot that it will still give a fairly solid attachment point compared to an ankle strap.
Who Will Enjoy the Glute Kickback PRO?
If you love glute kickbacks and are often doing this move with a cable machine, it might be really worth considering getting this product! It’s small and lightweight enough to easily fit in your gym bag.
There are a lot of similar products available on Amazon at the moment, many of them cheaper priced, but a lot of them have poor reviews when it comes to quality – stitching coming undone and D shackles breaking is a common theme. With this IPR Fitness option, you are paying for a higher quality product, that won’t break.
Based on the pricing and quality of these, I think that they’re really more geared to more serious athletes – particularly fitness competitors and those who will be lifting heavy enough weight with enough frequency where the quality of the product used will really matter.
Who Isn’t it For?
Given its a more premium product, you might want to give it a miss if you rarely do cable kickbacks, or don’t have access to a cable machine.
While it could be used for resistance bands at home, unless you have a really good setup with solid anchor points and quality bands, I’d recommend against using the Glute Kickback PRO with a resistance band – it’s honestly more suited to a cable machine where you’ll get consistent resistance throughout the whole range of motion (whereas resistance bands provide a non-linear load).
Also, at around $35 for a single strap or $65 for a pair, it’s definitely on the more expensive side. Based on this alone I’d say this product is really only for those who are using the cable machine for kickbacks with enough frequency and weight for the Glute Kickback straps to be ‘worth it’.
If you’re keen on this product but just the price is a factor, you could always try and get creative and ask your gym to purchase it for communal use – you never know, they might also see this as an investment in their equipment offerings and be happy to provide (Let’s face it: no one likes those uncomfortable ankle straps that can shift and chafe anyway)!
After checking out the Glute Kickback PRO version, it certainly looks like a high quality product and although it’s a bit more pricey, I think it’s a good purchase if you’re looking for a product like this and know that you’ll use it often enough to bring down that overall ‘price per use’.
Be wary of wasting your time and money with other similar products which are usually made in China and may use lower-quality components that won’t stand the test of time. I really love that the Glute Kickback PROs are ethically made in the USA to military grade specifications and all components are high quality to ensure safety and longevity.
There is also the option to buy the Glute Kickback PRO in a pair, which can be a timesaver as you simply wear both of the pair over your shoes and can just connect the cable machine hook to whichever side you want to work on; rather than having to remove and re-fit it to each shoe.
The main benefits for going for a product like this is to increase comfort and security when lifting heavy on kickback exercises with the cable machine as well as potentially boost your glute engagement due to the optimized attachment point to your entire foot, and this is certainly one of the best options out there that I’ve seen in terms of quality!