Butt Activation Exercises
It is no surprise the butt is often called “The Big House” when it comes to talking about muscle function. Makes sense because next to the Abs, the Glutes are the most important muscle group in the body when it comes to making us functionally strong.
Primary Functions of the Glutes
- They allow you to stop in multiple directions
- They help you lift heavy objects off the ground
- They allow you to push heavy objects
- They keep your knees and ankles stable
- They allow you to jump and run
- They create counter force to the Abs to keep your trunk stable
- They help you get upright from sitting
- They support you when you have to stand for long periods of time
- They are our primary climbing and crawling muscles
- They help you get up stairs
Needless to say it’s a pretty important muscle that allows you to enjoy each and every day as well as keep other joints like your low back, knee and ankle safe.
What’s amazing is the number of people who cannot activate their butt muscles and instead compensate with their thigh muscles, their groin muscles and in some cases with some very small muscles that surround the hip called your piriformis.
Looking at the list above, it becomes pretty obvious that there is no replacement for the butt.
Something to notice in my list above is that none of those functions require sitting or lying down. Yet, I see people constantly trying to train their butt artificially by sitting or lying down. Our butt activates best when standing because we can use the ground to create a counter force that instantly feeds up into our butt.
Without that force being transferred up through the leg, it makes it very difficult to activate the butt muscles. The other thing that helps the butt muscles activate is horizontal forces which lifting weights can’t accommodate. As a result, resistance bands are the best way to get your butt muscles activated and stronger.
10 Band Exercises that Activate and Strengthen Your Glutes
- Dynamic Stabilizer Rhythmical Reaches
- Dynamic Stabilizer Side Steps
- Dynamic Stabilizer Side Hops
- Attached Staggered Stance Halos
- Attached Vector Split Squats
- Attached Vector Side Steps
- Attached Vector Skaters
- Staggered Stance Rows
- Rotational 1 Arm Rows
- Attached Vector Kneeling Hip Thrusts
Important Cues to Increase Glute Activation
- Keep your weight bearing pressure through the heel
- Get your hip flexor and quad on stretch to decrease inhibition
- Move slow to give your butt a chance to recognize the movement
- Try to create rhythmical movement through your upper body to mirror your lower body movement
- Keep your band positioned at the hip crease and don’t let it ride up on your body