You might not know this, but your glutes are your biggest muscles. On your journey to training yourself to maximum fitness, it’s easy to focus on the sexy Hollywood muscles like biceps, pectorals and abdominals. It’s important to not neglect your glutes as it can reduce the impact of and your skill in performing exercises like deadlifts, cleans or even lifting heavy objects.
We decided to compile some of the best glute exercises for men to get you started on your glutes workout process.
The clamshell is an amazing workout that really works your glute muscles. You have the option of adding a resistance band to increase the difficulty of the workout or you can perform it as is.
To start, lie on your side with your knees bent at a 45-degree angle. Ensure your hip-bones are aligned on top of each other for stability. Engage your abdominals by clenching your core to further increase stability. Keep your lower leg on the floor and your feet touching and raise your upper knee as high as you can. Hold your knee raised before returning to the starting position.
To incorporate the resistance band into your clamshell workout is easy as well. Just place the band around both legs above your knees and perform the movements.
The clamshell targets the outer edge of your glutes and is one of the best glute exercises for men when it comes to strengthening your glutes.
Hip thrusts are great if you’re just starting out and don’t consider yourself strong yet. Some movements and techniques need the support of a strong core or back muscles to fully execute.
Hip thrusts are one of the best glute exercises for men because they focus and depend almost entirely on your glute strength. They also help to develop your explosive power which will be useful for a range of other exercises.
To do hip thrusts, you need a low bench and weights. You can opt for a barbell, dumbbell or a kettlebell. If you’re just starting out, don’t feel pressured to go for heavy weights. It’s more important to focus on getting the form right.
Align the edge of the bench with the middle part of your back. If you’re using weights, place them on your lap. Start with your knees bent at around 45 degrees and your butt close to the ground. Thrust your hips up till your knees are at a 90-degree angle and your torso is parallel to the ground. Slowly return to the starting position.
One of the major powerlifting moves, many consider deadlifts to be an exercise for your back, but it is also one of the more comprehensive glute exercises for men. Your glutes are fully engaged to stabilize your body when you lift the weights, making it a great explosive training exercise for men. While effective, it is also important to practice good form to avoid injuring yourself.
Start with a barbell of your chosen weight on the floor. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes under the bar. Grip the bar outside your feet with your back straight and your chest out. Stand up fully and straighten your legs while keeping your arms locked and straight.
Your natural movement should carry the bar above your knees to about mid-thigh level. Return to the starting position, taking care to keep your back straight and chest out throughout.
Another move that trains your explosive power, the kettlebell swing can help improve cardiovascular fitness, burn fat, and help build your strength and power. It will also help to strengthen your shoulders and core.
To begin, place the kettlebell in between your feet. Bend your knees slightly and grasp the kettlebell and swing it back between your legs. Thrust your hips forwards and straighten your back, bringing the kettlebell up to your shoulder height. Let the kettlebell return to the starting position and repeat the move.
Single leg deadlift
A variation of the traditional deadlift, the single-leg deadlift helps to strengthen and focus on your glutes and legs.
For this variation, you start standing up straight holding your weight of choice, similar to the final move in a deadlift.
Lean forward and extend one leg behind you while shifting your weight onto the leg on the ground. Lean your body forward further and extend your arms downwards until you form a T shape. Return back to the starting position.
Another one of the staples in the gym-goer’s repertoire, squats are one of the most amazing glute exercises you can do. Again you can do this with or without weights. Performing a proper squat allows you to strengthen your glutes and legs and allow you to keep your lower body healthy.
Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and slightly pointed outwards. Tense your abs and look straight ahead. If you are using weights, you can go with a barbell, dumbbells or a kettlebell. Be sure to only use a weight you’re comfortable with.
Lower yourself into a squat. It is important to not over-bend your knees; lead the movement with your butt. Make sure your knees do not go over your toes. Return to the starting position, all the while keeping your back straight.
Bridges are an easy beginner level exercise. You can up the difficulty by adding a plate of weight or by doing bridges at the end of your workout.
Lie down with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent. Keep your arms flat and pointed towards your feet. While pressing your shoulders down against the ground, raise your hips into the air. To achieve maximum effect, clench your glutes as you are raising it.
Another beginner level exercise, lunges are amazing whether you’re relying on just your body weight or using additional weights. You can perform them in place or even on a run or trail.
Start with your feet together. Take a step forward while bending your legs. Both your front and back leg should be at angles close to 90 degrees. Either bring your back leg to join your front or vice versa and switch legs to complete one set.
Bulgarian Split Squat
The Bulgarian split squat is a compound glutes workout. What this means is that it works out other parts of your body in addition to your glutes. It trains your balance which strengthens your core, and it also works out your quads, hamstrings and calves.
The key to this move is elevation. Your rear leg is elevated. You can use a bench or even a step to achieve the elevation. Your posture and position should be as if you have or are about to complete a lunge, with the difference being the elevation of your rear leg.
Bend your knee or squat until your front thigh is almost horizontal and then return to the starting position. In the interest of convenience, it’s best to complete your reps on one leg first before switching.
The figurehead, when executed perfectly, is a great workout for your glutes, back and core.
Lie face down on your workout mat. Your arms should be by your side. Squeeze your glutes and raise your upper body and legs off the ground. Only your hips should be touching the floor.
It’s important for you to completely squeeze and activate your muscles at this point. You can try to imagine attempting to touch your feet. Hold this position for a moment before returning to the start.
Reverse Table-Up or Tabletop
Another glutes workout excellent for all levels. The reverse table-up is traditionally a yoga pose but you can surely include it into your sets.
You start in a position similar to the bridge; feet flat on the ground and knees bent. However, this time, sit up and place your hands flat on the ground. Squeeze your glutes and raise it till your body is horizontal and parallel to the ground. Hold for a few moments and then repeat.
Butterfly Hip Thrust
This is another effective glute exercise that requires you to consciously clench your glutes to really engage your muscles. To start, lie face-up on the floor with your knees bent. The soles of your feet should be touching each other. Clench your glutes and thrust your hips upwards. Your knees and shoulders should be in a straight line.
Lower your hips down slowly and repeat. While the initial motion is forceful, it is important to slowly lower your hips to avoid slamming into the ground.
Now it’s your turn!
By developing your glute muscles, you will greatly increase the effectiveness of your other workouts. The great thing about these glute exercises for men is that they involve other muscle groups like your abs and thighs, thus allowing you to get a full-body workout to tone and strengthen your muscles. That’s what makes them great for incorporating into your daily workout routine so you can really kill two birds with one stone.
Try them out for yourself next time you hit the gym, and let us know how it worked for you.
P.S. Constantly on the lookout for a great fitness challenge? Be sure to give The Ultimate Push Up Workout: Get Ripped Quick a read!