GET YOUR BUTT IN GEAR WITH THESE 5 EXERCISES
Working out is fun to do – or at least it can be, as long as there isn’t never ending burpees involved. (Burpees = ugh!) But if you’re nervous about hitting the gym or you simply want to keep your workout in the comfort of your own living room, you’re in luck! We have this list of easy, equipment free exercises to get your butt in gear. Now, as the title might suggest, these particular exercises are meant to focus on the booty, and what better way to start than with some squats?
This one should be familiar to anyone who has been subjected to the torture of high school P.E. classes, and it’s actually a great exercise. It uses your body weight to work your glutes, hamstrings, and quads. You’re going to want to start with your feet slightly wider than hip width apart, toes facing forward. Engage the abdominals, and pull the shoulder blades back and together, keeping the back as straight as possible. Bend the knees slowly, pushing your butt and hips back as if you were about to sit in a chair. Keeping your knees aligned over the ankles and your weight evenly balanced, lower down until the thighs are as close to parallel to the ground. Keep the torso lifted off the thighs, and straighten back up. Repeat 15 times.
Standing Booty Kick to the Back
Standing booty kicks are the ultimate do anywhere exercise. Extra time before work? Standing booty kicks. Waiting in line at the post office? Standing booty kicks. Reading the nutritional facts on a box of cereal at the grocery store? Standing booty kicks. Just don’t kick anyone. Start by standing tall, with your hands on your hips. Shift your weight onto your right leg, and lift your left leg behind you. Don’t forget to really focus on making your glutes do the work. Keep the right foot flexed and the abs engaged, and then lower the left foot. Don’t quite touch the ground before heading into your next rep, lifting once again. Try doing 20 reps before switching legs.
Standing Booty Kicks to the Side
Glutes on fire yet? Get ready for round two of those standing butt kicks. This time, instead of kicking your leg back, you’re going to lift out to the side, before lowering back down. Don’t forget to keep the foot flexed and the abdominals engaged for balance, and really focus on using the muscles in your butt to lift your leg. Go for another 20 reps on each side with this one.
For this exercise, you might want to try using a yoga mat, a blanket, or even just some carpet, so your knees are protected and more comfortable. Start on all fours, and then stretch your right leg back behind you until it is totally straight and your toes are pointed. Think of yourself as ballerina when it comes to that right leg, and allow the toes to rest on the floor. Now, just like with the booty kicks, focus your energy in the glutes, using the muscles there to lift your leg until it is in line with the rest of your body, parallel to the floor. Slowly lower the leg back down to starting position, allowing the toes to just kiss the floor before moving into the next rep. Do this move on each side 15 times.
Single Leg Bridge
Finally, the last one. Single leg bridges are nice to end an exercise with, because when you’re done, you’re laying down, and that is prime napping position. To start this move, you’ll want to lie on your back, with your hands on the floor for stability. Both knees should be bent, with your feet flat on the ground. Then, straighten the right leg and lift it off the ground. From there, dig your left heel into the ground, pressing up through the left glute, lifting the pelvis off of the floor and towards the ceiling. Then lower slowly. Repeat this move 15 times on both sides.
Of course, as much as we love our rears to be shapely and visually appealing, there are more benefits to working the glutes than fitting into that one pair of problem jeans. Your glutes are responsible for holding the pelvis level and steady while you walk or run. A stable pelvis means a happy body, and it can even reduce lower back and lessen pressure on the knees. So, as Ray Arnold might have said: "Hold onto your butts!"
s it time for that nap we mentioned earlier?
*Please note these instructions are very basic guides. If you are new to yoga, pilates, or any of the fitness moves pictured above, please find a local studio near you and take a couple of classes before attempting to practice alone. We cannot be held responsible for an injury caused by following these instructions.