determine starting measurementsAny journey begins with a starting point, and that is what we’ll establish today. It’s called taking stock… of you!

Establishing a starting point gives you a reference to go back to at a later date, to track your progress and celebrate your victories.

Most people make the mistake of skipping this step, and I’ve certainly been guilty of this myself, thinking “I’ll do it later”, or “I’m sure I’ll notice changes when they happen”.

Trust me though….

Unfortunately, you won’t notice the small changes.

To be honest, for the time it takes to throw a tape measure around a few parts of your body and snap a few starting photos – even if you never go back to look at these again, the value that they will provide on the off-chance that you do is well worth the initial (minimal) effort.

Sorry people, but you don’t really have any legitimate excuse to skip this important step.

No excuse

I wish I had taken measurements a few years ago so that I have some reference to how my body is now. I suspect that I’ve let myself go a little, but have no way of knowing this without real data to refer to.

Tools Required

You will need a tape measure for this exercise. You can actually get some handy body tape-measures these days which are specifically designed for taking body measurements, something like this one from

Retractable tape measure for taking body measurements. (Click to view on Amazon)

How to Measure Your Butt

The typical hip measurement, which is a common body measurement, is what we’ll use to monitor the progress of your butt.

This measurement is taken while standing with the tape measure wrapped horizontally around your buttocks at the largest point, like this:

Keep the tape horizontally level. It may help to use a mirror to ensure that you are holding the tape measure level around the buttocks.

Don’t get this measurement confused with your actual ‘hip’ measurement, which is with the tape wrapped around higher than your butt and over your hip bones:

How To Measure Your Waist

You may also want to measure your waistline, as changes here can affect your whole body shape and definitely complement your butt’s appearance.

Take the measurement at the skinniest part of your waist, usually just above the belly button. Don’t suck in your stomach; instead try taking a deep breath, then letting it out naturally before taking the measurement.

Take Additional Measurements If You Want To

Today I took my waist, butt, hip and thigh measurements but I also took additional measurements to try and map out the current state of my butt a bit better (cue mad scientist persona).


I have quite prominent hip bones, so  I used these as a reference point along with other static points such as the top of my butt crack and the edge of my butt creases as the butt joins the legs.

I’m not sure if these measurements will come in handy or not but at least I’ll have them in case I want to refer back to them later (complete with crude butt sketches showing where each dimension was taken!). Let’s just hope no one finds my notebook or they will think I’m really weird!

The Best Tool of All – Photographs

Photographs will allow you to see changes that measurements might not readily reveal, such as a lifted butt, a firmer tone, or filling out in a particular area of the butt to try and round out your overall shape.

They are also the best ‘before and after’ tool that you can use to remind yourself of your impressive body transformation results!

I recommend taking photographs in a set spot. By that I mean, come up with a room location and lighting arrangement that is unchanging and reproducible.

Don’t take comparison photos in natural lighting as this can vary from day to day and will not be able to be kept constant for when you take your ‘after’ comparison photos.

Tools Required

  • Cloth or plastic flexible tape measure
  • Mirror
  • Somewhere to write down measurements
  • Digital camera, with a self-timer function or otherwise a friend to help out!


Ensure that the tape measure is level and not pulled too tight or sitting too loose when taking measurements. The measurements should be taken against bare skin as clothing may give a false reading or otherwise skew your measurements.

What About Weight?

If you’re going through a measuring process, it can also be beneficial to note down your weight if you have a set of scales handy.

I generally try not to pay too much attention to this; it’s just a number on a scale, and doesn’t accurately convey the way your body looks in real life.

For example, it’s possible to weigh more if you have a lot of muscle (and presumably a lean/toned body!), compared to if you had low muscle mass but were carrying more fat.

This is because muscle occupies less space than fat (on a same-weight basis).

I generally just include this measurement as a point of interest, but again, don’t pay too much attention to it.

The main thing to pay attention to is what you see in the mirror!



Now What?

Now that you’ve taken your starting measurements, you have a great reference point to work from! Keep your measurements and photos aside (with the date you took them noted on it) in a safe place. You can refer back to these later to see if you’ve made any progress or not.

Don’t take measurements too often, or you might get discouraged.

I would recommend taking measurements no more frequently than monthly.

After this, you’ll be wanting to start a good butt-building program so you can start improving your butt!

Be sure to check out our butt challenges, or some of the best butt workouts and programs that I’ve reviewed if you’re looking for some inspiration!

Taking Stock – Determining Your Starting Measurements
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