Squats have their place, but if you want to fine-tune your butt, you need to add more derriere-defining exercises to your routine. Try these moves celebrities swear by for tightening backsides without bulking up legs.
This is the go-to move Gwyneth Paltrow uses to keep her backside perky and in shape, says trainer Stacey McDermott, who works with Tracy Anderson. In addition, "this move is engaging everything: your arms are very much involved, your total body is working to keep that position correct," says Stacey.
- Start on all fours on your mat. Take your right leg and fold it over so your ankle is resting on your left thigh. Press back into Downward Dog.
- Lower back down to the floor so your knees touch your mat briefly. Keep your elbows straight.
- Raise back up slightly so you are in a Plank position, making sure your hips aren't raised too high. Stretch your right leg out to the side, lifting it up high and pointing your toes to the ceiling.
- Fold right leg back in and lower back down so knees slightly touch your mat. This completes one rep. Repeat 30-40 times, then switch legs.
For more moves that helped reshape Gwyneth's butt, check out our video of Tracy Anderson's butt exercises.
Reverse Crossover Lunges
This move tones problem areas on your lower body, says celebrity trainer David Kirsch, who helped shape up Heidi Klum postpregnancy. "It's going to work the outer thighs, perfect for pear-shaped women that need tightening and reducing of the hips. It's also going to work on your butt," he says. You can hold a medicine ball as shown or do bicep curls with a pair of dumbbells to make this a total-body toner.
- Stand with your feet shoulders-distance apart.
- Step back with your right leg, this time lunging behind your torso and stepping back behind and to the side of your left leg. Raise back up. Repeat 15-20 times each leg.
Watch our David Kirsch butt-toning video for how to do the reverse crossover lunge and more.
Plank With Leg Lift
Trainer Justin Gelband gets the Victoria's Secret Angels ready for the runway with this exercise, which works different areas of your backside depending on which angle you place your leg. "It creates a nice little circle butt that is toned and firm but also lifted," Justin explains. He recommends using ankle weights with this move "to work on the toneness and firmness of the legs and the butt at the same time."
- Start on all fours on your mat. Lift your right leg out behind you at a 45-degree angle. Keep your leg at butt level. Flex your foot so the sole of your foot is facing the back wall. Keep your chin down and neck neutral. Lift your leg up slightly, then lower down again. Repeat 12-15 times.
- Move your leg until it is straight behind you (as shown in the photo), then repeat the lifting motion for 12-15 reps.
- Now point your right leg to the opposite corner, so it is about a 45-degree angle pointing to the left. Repeat lifting motion for 12-15 reps.
- Rest in Child's Pose, then repeat entire sequence on left leg.
Watch this and more moves in this Victoria's Secret butt-toning workout video.
- Stand with your left foot under your left hip, making sure to keep a soft bend in your knee. Bend your body at a 90-degree angle with arms reaching out to the wall in front of you.
- Lengthen your right leg, and lift it up to hip height. Lower it down to the floor, then repeat 10 times. Then, with your right leg extended, do tiny one-inch pulses 20 times. Repeat on your left leg.