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    The best exercises to tone your bottom!

    One of the simple pleasures of life is a well-rounded derrière, and just how to develop the perfect bottom is a popular topic amongst women. 

    We decided to do the world a favour by sharing our 3 current favorite exercises to develop a stronger, perkier, bottom!

    It is important to know that three major muscles make up your glutes, and that targeting each of these muscles is the the key to developing a well-rounded posterior. They include:

    1. Gluteus maximus
    2. Gluteus medius
    3. Gluteus minimus

    Pictured: Diagram showing positioning of the gluteal muscles

    By performing the following 3 exercises you will effectively target these three major muscles.

    Use a weight that enables you to complete the provided rep range, but no more.

    • Box squats:

    Target: Gluteus maximus
    Execution: Perform a back squat in a slow and controlled manner, sitting back on to a box or bench. On the descent bend your hips back, bend your knees and keep your shins perpendicular. Pause on the box/bench before exploding upward. On the ascent drive your hips upward, keep your chest high and your knees above ankles until legs are straight. At the top of the movement thrust your hips forward and squeeze your glutes. Repeat 10-12 times for 3 sets.

    Note: Do not bounce off the box. The height of the box should allow your hips to travel slightly lower then the knee.

    • Cable Hip abduction:

    Target: Gluteus medius & gluteus minimus (hip abductors)
    Execution: Using a low pulley, face to one side and attach an ankle cuff to your far ankle. Step away from the pulley and hold on to the ballet bar with your closest hand. Standing on your near foot, move your far leg away from the pulley by abduction in the hip. Return your leg allowing it to cross in front of anchored foot. Repeat 10-12 times for 3 sets.
    Note: This can also be performed on the hip abduction machine if you have access to one

    • Dumbbell Lunges

    Target: A long lunge emphasises the gluteus maximus
    Execution: Stand with dumbbells or olympic grip plate at sides. Lunge forward with the first leg landing on your heel and then forefoot. Lower your body by flexing the knee and hip of front leg until the rear leg is almost touching the floor. Return to the original starting position by forcefully contracting your working glute & exploding off the forward leg, making sure the weight is distributed through your leading heel. Repeat by alternating with opposite leg. Perform 30 steps (15 each leg) for 3 sets. 
    Note: Warm up your hip flexors prior to performing this exercise i.e. do a set of bodyweight lunges. Keep torso upright when performing lunges. Lead knee should point same direction as lead foot throughout the lunge.

    Not only are strong, well-rounded bottoms aesthetically pleasing, but they are important for increasing your performance on heavy lower body exercises such as squats and deadlifts. Additionally, glute training is very important in the prevention of hip, knee and lower back dysfunction- so get to training those glutes!

    Don't forget to check out our gym wear for lifters at www.strongliftwear.com!

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