Ever notice your rear-end drops lower and gets flatter with every passing year? Building gluteal muscles is not always about esthetics, it can be, but here are other ideas why it is important to have a firm tush.
Squats and lunges alone won’t get to these muscles and if you’re limited by knees that don’t allow you to do squats and lunges, you can still target your glutes with special exercises that isolate this part of your lower body. Strengthening the “glutes” can support your knees. If you’ve lost cartilage it won’t bring it back, but strong gluteal muscles and hips keep the knees in optimal alignment and increase stability.
If you forget to use your glutes properly when lifting something heavy, you may rely on your back instead. Chances are, the injury was caused because the glutes weren’t engaged. Your glutes should be doing the heavy lifting, not your spine! Strengthening this area requires good form and concentration. You must “tell” your glutes to work—they can be lazy.
What is the function of the gluteus medius? This muscle works with the other muscles on the side of your hip to help pull your thigh out to the side in a motion called hip abduction. For example, when walking and lifting your left leg up and forward, the right gluteus medius is contracting to keep your body level.
What equipment can I use to strengthen this muscle? You can use a variety of equipment or your own body weight to improve your lazy butt muscles. If you chose to use bands, tubing, etc., there are some exercises you can try. Always buy from a reputable company. Over time the bands will stretch out. Be sure to check them periodically for any rips or tears and replace when needed.
How to stay safe? With any exercise, remember to start slowly. It is also important to learn the difference between fatigue in the muscle vs. pain. Allow one- or two-days’ rest in between and learn to stretch properly to help with recovery, results and added mobility.
Additional exercises After looking at my resistance band page, you might want to consider some exercises not included on that page. Floor bridges are easy on the knees. If you lay on your back or place a stability ball under your calves, lift and raise your rear end. Do 12 to 20 repetitions for two to three sets. When your butt feels as if it is burning from the contractions, you are doing them correctly.
For more information or instructions on how to do exercises correctly, alleviate pain from arthritis without compromising form and more, contact us through our website or call 818-620-1443 to schedule a consultation. We do fitness differently!