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As one of the body's deepest and most powerful muscle systems, the glutes are responsible for a solid majority of athletic movements. Glute exercises help build maximal strength, increase velocity and boost power output. (Read more on STACK'S Glutes page.) However, in my position as a trainer, I continually see weak glutes from over-dominant hip flexors. If I had a chicken for every time I saw someone perform Squats improperly, I would have my own chicken farm.
(Check yourself before you wreck yourself: Squat 101: A How-To Guide.)
Also, people, please end your love affair with the Leg Press machine. Granted, the Leg Press allows you to maximize the load, but hip extension is limited and it inhibits the glutes.
The following are my five best glute exercises. I believe everyone should incorporate them in their training program to maximize the recruitment of the glutes.
Hitchko's Five Best Glute Exercises
Control the movement and make sure to thrust, or "pop," the hips during the upward phase.
These work the glutes and hamstrings more than Front Squats.
Unilateral training is beneficial because the majority of our movements are performed with one leg. This glute exercise bridges the gap for any weaknesses in just one leg.
Do you see many volleyball players or track athletes with weak glutes? Enough said.
A great single-joint movement to strengthen the lower back, glutes and hamstrings.
Take your glute exercises to the next level with the following workout:
- Broad Jumps: 5 sets of 10 maximal jumps (rest for three minutes between sets)
- Back Squats: 5 sets of 5 reps (heavier weights with longer rest periods of between three and five minutes)
- Single-Leg Bosu Squats: 3 sets of 10 reps per leg, resting for one minute
- Compound set of Stiff-Legged Deadlifts immediately followed by Hip Thrusters: 10 reps each, resting one minute after Hip Thrusters
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