Cookie Consent

Glute Activation Exercises

Activating Your Glutes Could Be the Secret to a Bigger Butt — Here's How to Do It

If you didn't already know, sitting down for extended periods of time is bad for your muscles. Over time, extended periods of sitting will cause your hip flexor muscles to tighten and eventually turn off your glutes, leaving you with a case of dormant butt syndrome.

Opting for a standing desk and taking breaks from working to move around are great options to begin to correct your dormant butt. On top of that, diligently working toward strengthening your gluteal muscles will keep them turned on throughout your day. To make sure your butt muscles are firing properly, we've rounded up our favorite booty strengthening and toning exercises for you to do.

Choose three exercises from the list ahead and complete two to three sets of 10 to 12 reps for each exercise. Try to do these exercises three times a week to prevent dormant butt syndrome and build your booty. These moves should be used as an extension to your warmup, and always done before lower-body workouts. If you're an overachiever, feel free to use these moves as a quick booty workout.

1. Traditional Bridge Exercise

  • On your mat, lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Be sure to keep your feet underneath your knees, not in front. Plant your palms by each side, face down.
  • Raise your hips up to the ceiling, tensing your abs and squeezing your butt as you do. You should be making a long diagonal line with your body, from shoulders to knees.
  • Hold for a few seconds, making sure your spine doesn't round and your hips don't sag. Keep your abs and butt muscles engaged.
  • Lower down to the ground; this is considered one rep.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Studios

2. Fire Hydrant

  • Start on all fours with your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips.
  • Keep your right knee at a 90-degree angle as you slowly raise your leg to the right until it is parallel to the ground. Avoid lifting your right hip, as you should keep both hips squared toward the floor.
  • With control, lower your leg back to the ground.
  • This counts as one rep.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

3. Donkey Kicks

  • Start on all fours, with your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips.
  • Keep your right knee at a 90-degree angle as you slowly raise your leg behind you until your thigh is almost parallel to the floor. Pulse your flexed foot toward the ceiling by squeezing your glutes. Your back should remain perfectly still in a neutral spine. The motion should be small and controlled with your muscle doing the work, not momentum.
  • Return to start position to complete one rep.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

4. Lateral Band Walks

  • Place a resistance band just below your knees.
  • Begin standing with feet directly underneath your hips, and squat about halfway down.
  • Take a step sideways to the right as far as you can. To fully activate your muscle, be sure to step onto your heel, rather than your toes.
  • Actively resist the pull of the exercise band as you bring your left leg slowly toward your right, returning to the starting position.
  • This completes one rep.
Image Source: Benjamin Stone

5. Single-Leg Bridges

  • Lie on your back and place your hands on the floor for stability as you bend one leg and lift the other leg off the ground.
  • Pressing your heel into the floor, lift your pelvis up, keeping your body in a stiff bridge position.
  • Slowly lower your body to the floor. This counts as one rep.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography

6. Marching Bridge

  • Lie on your back with your hands by your side, and your heels about 12 inches from your pelvis. Press your heels into the floor to come into a bridge position with a neutral spine.
  • Press your right heel into the floor, and keeping your knee bent, raise your left leg until your hip is a 90 degrees. Lower your left leg down, pressing through your glutes so your pelvis doesn't drift to the floor along with the leg. This counts as one rep.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Studios

7. Standing Booty Kicks

  • Stand tall, and place your hands on your hips.
  • Put all your weight in your right leg, keep both legs straight, and lift your left leg directly behind you. Let your glutes do all the work. Keep your left foot flexed, and work on lifting your heel as high as you can without leaning your torso too far forward. Engage your abs to help you stay balanced.
  • Then, lower your left leg so it's parallel with your right, but don't let it touch the ground.
  • This counts as one rep.
Image Source: Benjamin Stone
From Our Partners