Do you find your buttocks soft and you want to achieve a firm, even plump, buttocks? Glute squats, hip thrust, glute machine, these words mean nothing to you and tend to scare you? Find out how to strengthen your buttocks to have beautiful buttocks ! The Pharmasimple team has looked into the question and gives you the exercises and tips to know to have the butt you dream of!
Gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, gluteus minimus: a little anatomy …
The 3 main gluteal muscles
When we talk about the gluteal muscle, we should actually be talking about the gluteal muscles. Our buttocks are indeed more complex than they appear! Our posterior is made up of 3 muscles, also known as the gluteal muscles : the gluteus maximus , gluteus medius and the gluteus minimus . It is important to know this information, because you will need to activate these 3 muscles during your workouts if you want to strengthen your buttocks and give them the desired shape! While a large, well-muscled buttocks will give the buttocks their volume , the small and medium buttocks will help to give them a nice shape .
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What are the benefits of a muscular butt?
Let’s not lie to ourselves: the first benefit sought when looking to strengthen your buttocks is often aesthetic! Those who like nicely designed buttocks should know that a muscular buttocks brings more than sex appeal. Thus, the gluteal muscles are used during many movements: running, jumping, walking, getting up, sitting down … However, many people perform office work, which requires maintaining a prolonged sitting position. Unsolicited, the glutes then gradually lose mass, and end up not being powerful enough to properly support the balance and functioning of the legs. Other muscles then take over and do part of the muscle work that should be done by the buttocks. Problem : these “compensating” muscles are not designed for such activity. Ultimately, this muscle imbalance can lead to pain and discomfort in the rest of your body, especially in the knees and lower back.
Building your buttocks is therefore not reserved for “fitgirls” but is also recommended:
people over 50, who face natural muscle wasting (especially in the buttocks muscle).
to people doing office work.
more generally, sedentary people, who stay in a sitting position for a long time or use their legs little.
Weight training, swimming, running … which sport to strengthen your glutes?
There are many sports that can help give you a great butt!
The riding : to sit on a horse, you have to tighten your legs! This sport is at the same time excellent for shaping the legs, strengthening the abdominal belt, and taking a good breath of fresh air in the company of a sensitive and intelligent animal.
The volleyball : the volleyball waiting position? A squat ! By adopting this position throughout the game, but also by throwing the ball with the strength of the legs (the legs are used to give you momentum), you will firm thighs and buttocks in no time!
The pen : popular sport on holiday, skating is a great ally for tonic buttocks and bulging. The movement necessary to advance in roller skating requires intense work on the glutes and thighs. In winter, switch to skating to regain this movement. You work your muscles casually, while getting intoxicated with speed!
The walking (but not any): Mountain hiking, with its steep slopes, you will beef up your glutes, heavy loads to move uphill. To combine paradisiacal landscapes and queen’s buttocks!
The trampoline (or “jumping”): this discipline is starting to make people talk again and courses are dedicated to it. Necessary to throw you in the air and receive you on the trampoline, the muscles of your buttocks will heat up! This discipline also has the advantages of working the whole body and being particularly cardio.
The bike : if you pedal like a dancer (buttocks in the air and not resting on a saddle), you will use them like never before! This unusual position can be difficult to adopt outdoors. However, it is one of the essentials of a good spinning session , group indoor cycling lessons. You will come out all sweaty (it’s a very cardio sport), but delighted!
The swimming : backstroke, asking a beat intense legs, is shown. Also, don’t forget the good old breaststroke technique: your legs throw you forward, imitating the movements of a frog. Freshness will be there, in this sport which combines aquatic pleasures and butt work! To reinforce their work, do not hesitate to bring fins.
The skiing : if you have tasted the pleasure of the slopes this winter, you’ll definitely felt strong pains in the buttocks in the early days of practice. It’s not for nothing ! Skiing requires an outward projection of the legs to make you move forward (it is the same principle as for rollerblading or skating).
However, if you want to target your glutes in particular, weight training and fitness exercises are your best allies. They allow you to build the buttocks in a specific way. They are also easy to make at home, and do not necessarily require expensive equipment. No need to pay a subscription or break the bank on equipment!
Woman or man: how to work the glutes and strengthen them?
There is no specific exercise for women or men when it comes to building muscle . All individuals are different, and men and women alike who want to strengthen their buttocks, should rather think about adapting the choice of exercises to their goals and their anatomy (more or less short legs, more or less wide pelvis, joint discomfort, etc. physical condition) rather than their gender. Note, however, that on average, women recover twice as quickly as men. Many women will therefore be able, if they have the desire and the energy, to wedge an additional session dedicated to the buttocks in their program!
As for men, they will have the advantage, thanks to a naturally greater muscle mass , of being able to rapidly increase the load used during exercises using weights.
How to build the buttocks quickly?
There is no miracle exercise that will build your buttocks in a few days. If you train this area of the body regularly, (between 2 to 3 times a week) you should feel the first results after about 1 month. They will be light, subtle, but they will be there! All the same, count between 4 and 6 months to see really obvious results.
Here is a little tip to motivate you:
Take a photo of your butt at the start of your workouts, and repeat that “booty-selfie” every month. The before / after effect should help motivate you!
Why does building muscle take so long?
The buttocks muscles, like all muscles, need to be used regularly to be strengthened. By doing an exercise that uses them, you send a message to your body: “I need more power, strengthen this muscle!”.
The body will then begin a process of adaptation by creating additional muscle tissue and repairing the micro-injuries inflicted on the muscle. Rest assured, these micro-injuries are natural after unusual and grueling muscle use! They are the ones that cause the aches and pains. To “repair” your muscles, your body will need “building blocks”: energy, protein, and certain amino acids. To build your glutes, you will therefore need to be patient, regular, and adopt a diet adapted to your new needs. We reassure you: there is nothing rocket science here, and you don’t need to upset your habits to build your glutes effectively!
Proteins, natural building blocks to build your muscles!
To have a muscular buttocks , the first rule is to give your muscles something to build! The proteins are the first involved in the construction of tissues, including muscle. You can find them in your diet (meats, eggs, tofu, oilseeds, legumes…), but you may not be consuming an optimal amount. Knowing that an average person will need 1.2 grams to 1.8 grams of protein per kilogram, do your math!
You can also ensure a good protein intake by using protein powders , based on milk proteins (whey powder) or vegetable proteins for vegans (proteins from peas, flax, quinoa, soy…). They provide you with concentrated protein , low in fat and carbohydrates. Discover our selection of proteins, to add to your sweet recipes (yogurt, pastries) or to consume in the form of “shakes” with a creamy texture.
The Eafit milk protein help you gain muscle mass. Rich in amino acids, they promote optimal muscle building and rapid recovery. Succumb to their delicious vanilla taste!
The Plant Proteins Eafit Protivegan , based on pea protein, rice and cranberry, brings you 22 grams of protein per dose. Rich in fiber and easy to digest, these vegetable protein powder are available in vanilla-caramel and chocolate-hazelnut versions . Delicious !
Special “bodybuilding” food supplements that will boost your performance
A well-known maxim in sports circles argues that a muscular body is “ 20% sport, 80% nutrition ”! The reality is of course more nuanced, but it is still true that a diet rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals will help you build muscle more efficiently !
The creatine capsules Eafit : present in muscles, creatine helps in proper muscle contraction and is also a key component of the energy transport to the muscles. To boost your muscle growth , count on this amino acid appreciated by bodybuilding practitioners!
The tablets Spirulina Bio Be Life : The spirulina is a super food known athletes. It is indeed one of the foods richest in nutrients on the planet, especially in vegetable proteins ! Spirulina is also rich in iron , essential for the good oxygenation of the muscles and the transport of nutrients that will help you transform your flat buttocks into an impressive “booty”! It also has many other health benefits , to discover in our dedicated article!
The BCAA Eafit capsules : Synthesis of 3 amino acids essential to health and particularly important for building muscle, the BCAA Eafit bring you the benefits of leusine, valine and isoleucine. These 3 amino acids play a specific role in muscle function and promote good recovery while supporting the reconstruction of muscle tissue.
How to motivate yourself when you have no energy?
It is not always easy to motivate yourself to play sports, especially if you lack energy ! A healthy lifestyle is important to refuel vitality, but we all have our temporary soft spots. To attack your session with the rage of a lioness, use a booster ! Most of the time flavored, boosters are energy drinks that will give you the pizzazz you need.
The bulbs Vitality 4G : this solution energizing bulbs uses the properties of ginseng, royal jelly, guarana and ginger for an immediate boost. To be taken pure or diluted in a bottle of water just before your session! This food supplement is also available in the form of shots , mini plastic bottles that are easy to store in your bag.
How to warm up when you want to strengthen your glutes?
Since you will be working your legs , favor a warm-up that makes them move! The objective of a warm-up is to prepare the body for the effort. We increase the body temperature, we activate the blood circulation, we wake up the muscles … Indispensable for a safe and effective training, warming up:
Allows you to avoid injury by warming up your muscles, so as not to perform exercises on a cold muscle.
Prepares muscles for exercise and therefore allows you to “feel” them better during exercise.
Activates the blood circulation , which will therefore provide the oxygen necessary for optimal activation of the muscles during your exercises.
A warm-up is also a good way to start your session gently, while gradually putting you in a motivational frame of mind ! Walk between 10 and 15 minutes, use a “stepper”, a small machine that imitates the steps of a staircase, but also introduce certain gentle stretches and even yoga positions… The principle is to move! If you are exercising with weights, you can also start by doing them “empty”, that is, without the weights, during sets of 12 to 15 repetitions.
Strengthen your glutes, yes, but watch out for injuries! Exercises to do without equipment
If you write down “ exercises to strengthen your glutes ” in a search engine, you will undoubtedly come across very classic exercises such as squats , lunges or even deadlifts . While they are indeed very effective for building the buttocks, this type of exercise can also worsen pain already present in the back or knees. In question ? An overly weakened buttock, the functioning of which is compensated for by other muscles (as we said above, in the paragraph explaining the benefits of a muscular buttock). By trying to activate your gluteal muscles through this type of exercise, you risk reinforcing the imbalance, because you will be using your compensating muscles. If you are a complete beginner or are coming out of a very sedentary period, therefore plan a gentle training that will gradually include more classic exercises with weights (although the use of weights is absolutely not mandatory) to allow your muscles glutes to revitalize themselves little by little. You can for example:
Doing a rear leg lift: an easy basic exercise
Installed on all fours on a mat, your back straight (contract your abdominals to be sure not to arch your spine), you lift one leg towards the ceiling while keeping the foot “flex”, that is to say with the point extended towards the ground (and not in the extension of the leg). To add difficulty to the exercise, you can equip yourself with an elastic band (also called “elastiband”) and place it at your thighs. It will force you to use your leg muscles to keep the elastic in place and add additional resistance during the movement. You can perform this movement 10 to 15 times depending on your level, in 3 to 4 sets. Take a 30-second break between sets. Don’t forget to work both legs!
Rear leg lift – build your glutes
Rear leg lift
Do a side leg lift: to work on stability in addition to the buttocks
Lying on your side, helped by both hands to stabilize you, your legs are stretched out, placed one on top of the other. You lift the upper leg towards the ceiling and bring it back without resting it on the other leg. Repeat this movement ten times, 3 times in a row, taking a 30-second break between each set. You can also add an elastic band at thigh height. To add extra work and strengthen your core belt, try using only one hand to support your weight, while the other arm will be extended alongside your body.
Side leg lift to strengthen your glutes
Side leg lift
Do a pelvic lift: to combine sheathing and gluteal work
Positioned on your back (ideally on a mat or a comfortable surface), you have your feet flat on the floor, your knees are raised. Support yourself on your shoulders and lift your hips skyward, taking care to keep your abs tight to protect your back. Hold this position for 1 second and come back to the ground while blowing, then start again without having put your buttocks on the ground. Perform sets of 8 to 12 repetitions depending on your level. The little extra of this exercise? You strengthen both your abs and your leg muscles! To increase the difficulty of the exercise, you can of course add an elastic band at the thighs. You can also use a gym ball, or “gymball”, to work on your balance and make the exercise more fun!
Pelvic lift to strengthen your buttocks
To do this, all you need to do is place your heels on the ball and bring it back under your buttocks in a back and forth motion controlled by your heels. Burning sensations guaranteed! And if even this exercise seems easy to you… Try to carry out it while supporting on only one leg, the other leg being stretched over the ball!
Which machine to use to strengthen your glutes?
Have you decided to push open the doors of a gym to sculpt your butt and are looking for the most interesting machines to use? It is an excellent idea ! A gym offers you access to weight machines that target the buttocks in particular, as well as equipment that is difficult to store dearly. Most of the gyms also offer the services of coaches , who will explain what exercises to do or which machines to use according to your goal. They can also correct your posture to prevent you from injuring yourself. So never hesitate to ask them for advice, they are there for that!
The interesting machines to strengthen the glutes:
The “glute machine” : literally “gluteal machine”, this machine consists of a vertical cushion on which you rest your torso. A kind of pedal (sometimes mounted on a rail, sometimes in the form of a balance system) is also present. It is intended to be pushed back by one foot, to activate your glutes. Adapt the load to your capacities, and start your series by blowing with each push! Change legs between each set. If the “glute machine” is not free, you can also perform this movement with a pulley , by attaching your foot to one of the cables: this exercise is called the “ kick back on one leg ”.
The abduction machine : it is surely one of the most famous machines! Sitting on a seat, you must push two resistances outwards by spreading your legs. Easy to use, this machine requires you to be well secured in your seat. Do not hesitate to hold on to the seat with both hands to remain stable and not to arch your back.
The thigh press : sitting or lying on a seat, the feet placed vertically on a plate, you perform a pushing movement to push this plate back and find your legs almost stretched out. Particularly efficient, this machine must however be used by observing a few rules. Never straighten your legs completely (by locking the knees at the end of the movement), so as not to bear the weight on your joints and keep your back glued to the seat in order to protect your lower back. Always prioritize the quality of the movement over the importance of the load! It is better to make a “clean” movement with less load than to want to “push heavy” at all costs.
There are a myriad of other machines out there, but the ones outlined above will feature in virtually any gym.
How to use a special “buttocks” weight machine?
No matter what exercise you do, there is no point in rushing ! Wanting to do the exercises quickly will exhaust you and be counterproductive. Your muscles won’t build overnight anyway, so focus on good performance over intensity! If the only way you can do any of these exercises is to do them quickly, you have probably put on too much weight . Lighten it and perform your sets calmly, performing slow and controlled movements . Breathe out with each movement, inhale as the muscle relaxes , and pause for about 1 minute between each set to let your muscle recover.
Bodybuilding exercises for the buttocks: how many sets to strengthen your buttocks?
The sets of exercises vary depending on your goals, your energy level for the day, and the type of movement you are performing. However, to start, whether you are doing exercises without weight or with a load, it is generally recommended to adopt a rhythm of 4 sets with 12 to 15 movements each, between which you insert 1 to 2 minutes of break.
Can’t do your 12 reps?
If your muscles are very tired after the 10th or 12th repetition of the last set, this is normal: it means that you are working efficiently! However, if you have difficulty in the first few sets, it probably means that you are using too much weight or that the exercise you are doing is not being done correctly (or is simply not suitable for you). Drop a few pounds, get advice on how to position yourself correctly, or find a similar exercise that won’t be as difficult for you!
What stretches should you associate with your glute training?
Stretching your glute muscles should be part of your “glute special” routine . Stretching not only promotes recovery and can reduce muscle soreness , it also decreases the risk of injury. Finally, some glute stretches will allow you to gain flexibility and therefore range of motion. However, having a good amplitude makes it possible to perform certain exercises (such as squats) more effectively by increasing the muscular mobilization of the buttocks .
It is not mandatory to follow your workout directly with stretches of stretches. You can indeed perform these at a distance from your sessions. Why not in the morning, during your morning stretches, or in the evening, when you relax in front of a good movie?
Stretch your glutes while lying down
Stretch of the buttocks and hamstrings lying on the back to strengthen the glutes
Glute and hamstring stretch lying on the back
Lying on your back , you bend one leg towards you and grab your knee with both hands. Then pull your knee towards your chest until you feel a stretch. Try not to arch your back and breathe deeply throughout the exercise. Hold for about 30 seconds per leg and release.
A variation of this exercise will be to bend one leg in order to put your heel on the floor. You can then rest the ankle of the other leg against your thigh. Can you feel that butt stretch?
Stretch your glutes while sitting
Sitting glute and hamstring stretch for muscular glutes
Seated glute and hamstring stretch
Sitting on a mat, you extend your leg. You then bring your second leg over your thigh and rest the heel of the bent leg on the floor. Rotate your torso and pass your elbow over the bent leg to hold it in place to strengthen the stretch.
You can perform this stretch sitting on the floor , but also at height (on a bench for example). The important thing is to have enough room to put your foot on top of your leg.
Stretch your glutes while standing
Standing glute and hamstring stretch to strengthen your glutes
Standing glute and hamstring stretch
With your legs straight or slightly bent, you bend down, tucking your stomach in and try to press your chest against your legs, your hands towards the ground (they can also rest there to give you more stability). It is not mandatory to have your legs fully extended to perform this stretch. If you feel a stretch with your legs slightly bent, that’s enough! This movement also has the advantage of helping you relax and slightly stretch your back, which must be completely relaxed for this.
To accentuate the stretch of the buttocks during this movement, you can also straighten up keeping your back straight and place your hands on your thighs.
Be careful to stretch correctly!
Stretching should not be a source of significant pain . We often see people moaning and blowing in the gym, stretching in improbable positions … However, a good stretch must be a source of relaxation for the body, which is why breathing holds a central place. If you put too much stress on a muscle while stretching it, the body will interpret it as aggression. Stretching will then be a source of stress, a generator of muscle tension and you will lose all its benefits, not to mention the risk of injury. You should only feel a slight tension when you stretch. If you feel more, adjust their amplitude to your flexibility. This will improve over time: just like themuscle building , flexibility gain requires patience, your body gradually adapting to this routine. Breathe, close your eyes… and savor the feeling of the muscle relaxing !
Massage to promote recovery
To recover effectively, certain actions can help you! You can promote good muscle recovery by performing a gentle but deep massage on your buttocks muscles. Like all muscles, the glutes like to be massaged. The massage softens and relaxes the strained muscles. By activating blood circulation , a good massage will also help you shorten periods of muscle aches and promote tissue reconstruction.
Arnica ointment Weleda : recommended for bruises and bruises, arnica also helps in the recovery of sore muscles. Applied in massage, it will help you to fight the pains of aches!
Akileïne Relax Relaxing Relaxing Relaxing Gel : this massage gel enriched with amino acids, magnesium and potassium helps you to recover thanks to its precious active ingredients for muscle health. You combine the nutrition of your buttocks muscles with the benefits of a good massage on your thighs and buttocks!
Having a muscular butt doesn’t mean you will have a big butt!
Would you just like to draw your glutes and strengthen them, or get a voluminous Nicky Minaj style butt? Depending on your goals, the choice of exercises must be adapted! Indeed, performing exercises that strengthen your glutes will make them more powerful, more toned of course … But not necessarily more voluminous. However, you will get a nice, well-shaped and firm butt.
Also be aware that it is very rare to have buttocks made up entirely of muscle. Women will always have a layer of fat over their butt muscles unless they are on a drastic diet aimed at severe fat loss, which is not recommended for health.
Patience and consistency: the keys to having a muscular buttocks
To obtain a firm and advantageous buttocks , well-chosen exercises and a balanced diet will be your allies of choice! Whatever your goal, know that you will have to be patient and show perseverance for a few months before you get visible results. To motivate yourself, tell yourself that you are not doing these exercises just to be attractive, but also to take care of your health! So, ready to get the booty of your dreams?