Do you know what bleg is? It’s when your butt and leg become one (as in the opposite of the photo above). It’s not pretty… and something you definitely want to avoid, especially with bikini season around the corner. A high and mighty behind tops my bikini body wish list. So I went to an expert in the field for her best butt tips. Wendy Keimer whips butts into shape on a daily basis as a certified personal trainer at Mountainside Fitness. She knows what it takes to get great glutes and here she shares her best butt exercises…
4 Exercises for a Firmer Behind by Wendy Keimer from Mountainside Fitness
The key to a better booty is all in the “pulse.” Pulses are done at the point where the contraction is the greatest in whatever exercise you’re doing. They keep constant tension on the muscle and give you that deep burn – and a better booty! Here’s how to add them into your butt routine, plus tips to turn basic butt exercises into super moves:
1) Seated hamstring curl – This is one of the most effective machine butt exercises. It focuses on the insertion of the glute and hamstring tie in, which helps lift and tighten these areas. How to: Curl legs down until heels are tucked under your bottom. Focus on the muscle contraction throughout the entire range of motion, and return to the starting position.
Add the pulse: Complete 15 reps at full range then pull heels under bottom and shorten the range about 2-3 inches by pulsing with a slow and controlled motion for another 15 reps. Complete 5 sets (15 full; 15 pulses).
Extra booty blast: For those who really want to push themselves, complete the 15 full, 15 pulses with no rest between sets while eliminating the use of the handles. This forces you to focus on using your core for stability throughout the exercise.
2) Lying down hamstring curls – This is my other favorite machine exercise for glutes. It works your rear thighs and hamstrings to lift your tush. How to: Bring the pad all the way to their buttocks and lower the weight with control. Keep your chest against the bench as much as possible and try not to arch your back; instead push your pelvis down while you curl, focusing on muscle contraction and core as much as possible.
Add the pulse: Complete 15 reps at full range then pull heels under bottom and shorten the range about 2-3 inches and 15 reps. Complete 5 sets.
Extra booty blast: Complete the 15 full, 15 pulses with no rest between sets while eliminating the use of the handles. Push hips into machine, keeping back flat and abs tight.
3) Lunges – Lunges are a glute staple and for good reason: they’re a great equipment-free way to build your butt, plus they work your hips and thighs too. How to: Start with your feet should-width apart. Step one foot forward into a lunge position. Lower straight down, making sure to keep the front knee behind the toes. Keep your chest up and abs tight as you push through the front heel and back to the starting position.
Add the pulse: Full range lunge for 15 reps, them pulse in the low position for 15 reps (always squeeze glutes and quads). Switch legs and repeat. 10 sets per leg.
Extra booty blast: Try walking lunges. Drop to full range for one lunge then pulse at the bottom for 5 reps; lunge forward with opposite leg and pulse for 5 reps. Repeat for desired distance. Walking lunges can also be done backwards, isolating the glutes even further. This technique challenges your balance and builds core strength. Both can be done with dumbbells or barbells to increase difficulty.
4) Squats – Target your glutes, hamstrings and quads. Form is extremely important for best results. How to: Shift your weight back onto your heels and lower the body as if you’re sitting in a chair. Make sure to keep your knees over the tops of your feet, not the toes. Keep your chest up, your back flat and your head looking forward. Drop your bottom down and push your hips back until legs are parallel to the floor. Squeeze your butt on the upward motion to contract your glutes.
Add the pulse: Complete 20 full range reps and 15 short-range pulses. Do 4-6 sets.
Extra booty blast: Add explosive jump squats between sets to increase your heart rate (better fat burning!) and to target your booty!