Coveting a better behind isn’t just about aesthetics. A strong and sculpted butt is the secret to improving speed, power and overall sports performance, while also decreasing your risk of injury. After all, your glutes (made up of the gluteus minimus, gluteus medius and gluteus maximus) are the largest and strongest muscles in your body.
So how do you build a stronger backside? Squats are a good place to start. But if you really want to get your booty rock solid, it’s a good idea to incorporate weights, resistance bands, stability balls and even foam rollers into your glute workout. Here are 50 butt exercises that will help you think outside of the box when it comes to squats, lunges, glute bridges, leg lifts and more.
Butt Exercises: Squats, Lunges, Glute Bridges, Leg Lifts and More
Whether you love or hate ‘em, squats are one of the best butt exercises for strengthening your backside. Experts say that if you want to run faster, jump higher and lift heavier, squatting low is the way to go. They might look easy, but prepare to work when you add a barbell, slam ball or heel raise to the mix. These squat variations not only add some power to your jumps and kicks, but they also help improve your knee stability and range of motion. So how low can you go? Try these exercises to find out.
1. Dumbbell Squat to Press
The beauty of compound exercise really shines through with this squat thruster. Using power from your glutes and lower body, you’ll press the dumbbells up overhead in one continuous movement.
2. Bulgarian Squat with Slam Ball
Want to amp up your split squat? Try balancing on a slam ball. Engaging your core will help keep your foot from rolling off the ball and move with control. Consider it a must-do if you want a workout that offers core strengthening and a butt lift.
3. Landmine Squat Press
Riding the line between free weights and fixed machines, the landmine is a great way to practice proper form with the squat. Feet should be hip-distance apart and the weight in your heels. Holding onto the landmine with both hands will help keep your chest upright while squatting.
4. Back Squat
Want to nail a badass move with the barbell? The back squat is a good start. Here, you want to sit your body straight down, weight in your heels, while keeping your chest and back upright. Check out more tips on how to nail this move here.
5. Lateral Pistol Squats on Rower
Aside from getting in a killer cardio workout, the rower can work your booty in surprising ways. This lateral pistol squat not only ignites your glutes, but also your inner thighs and quads.
6. Sumo Squat
This barre-inspired bodyweight squat gives you the benefits of isometric exercise without putting pressure on your joints. You’ll not only get your glutes in gear, but your hamstrings and inner thighs, too.
7. Squat Jump Tap
If you want to train like LeBron (or, ahem, Steph Curry), you’ll get a taste with this basketball-inspired move. As you jump up from the squat position, bring your legs together and pencil your arms up with the ball in your hands. It’s one of the best exercises for increasing power.
8. Tricep Extension Squat
You’ll give your triceps some TLC in this squat with extension. As you squat down, swing your arms slightly behind your hips. And then as you stand up straight, extend your arms overhead. Feel free to use a pair of dumbbells to add some weight.
9. Pencil Squat
If you’re someone who gets confused about know what to do with your arms in a squat, this move is for you. Reaching your hands up will help you focus on height, while getting your heart rate up, too.
10. Side to Side Squats with Bosu Ball
Testing your agility and coordination, these side-to-side squats will force you to get lower and move more precisely as you tap each foot on the BOSU ball. It’s a sneaky way to add in some core work, too.
11. Deep Squat with Heel Raise
Reminiscent of chair pose in yoga, the heel raise will get your calves and quads burning, as well as your back and shoulders. If you want to make it more challenging, alternate heel raises.
12. Front Squat
Unlike a back squat where you place the barbell across your shoulders and lats, the barbell goes across your collarbone and in front of your body. This will force you to recruit more muscles in your core to maintain proper form.
13. Diagonal Squat Thrust
A variation of the burpee, you’ll jump your feet forward from plank position to a diagonal squat with your hips squared to the front.