Can Walking on Your Tiptoes Help Butt Muscles When Walking on the Treadmill?

by Grace Bordelon, Demand Media
    Leave the tiptoeing to the ballet studio; perform natural movements on the treadmill.

    Leave the tiptoeing to the ballet studio; perform natural movements on the treadmill.

    Walking on your tiptoes on the treadmill is likely to lead to injury and is not an effective workout for your buns. The treadmill has many benefits as it mimics the natural walking movement of your body, contracting and stretching muscles with each step. But doing your treadmill workout on your tiptoes throws your body off balance and focuses most of the work into your calves, not your glutes. Stick with your regular stride on the treadmill -- but up the intensity for the best calorie-busting workout. Add a strength training routine that focuses on the glutes if that is your goal.

    Walking On Your Tiptoes

    When you walk normally, you work out the entire leg as your knee bends and straightens, stretching the muscles around it. The hip flexors bring your legs back forward with each step. Rising onto your tiptoes keeps the calf muscle continually engaged, but shortens your stride, weakening the workout of your upper leg and glutes. Tiptoeing also gives you less stability. For safety, stay with a standard walk, jog or run. You will enjoy a more powerful glute workout with full leg extension.

    Gluteal Muscles

    Your butt is made up of the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The largest of the three is the gluteus maximus, which forms the rounded shape of your rear. The gluteus medius and minimus stabilize the hips and control the outward movement of your leg.

    Intensify Your Glute Workout

    The treadmill is an effective machine to work your entire body, but you can intensify the glute workout by adding an incline and focusing on bringing your heel down with each step. The elevation keeps your glutes and hamstrings engaged throughout the workout as they bring you up and forward.

    Other Glute Exercises

    Other exercises that can work your glutes include squats and the leg press. Squats are body-weight exercises that can be done from anywhere. Two sets of 25 squats each day is an excellent start to more toned glutes. Add strength training to your workout with the leg press. To focus the workout on your glutes, press through your heels and place your feet slightly higher on the foot plate for best results.

    About the Author

    Grace Bordelon is a public relations professional, teacher and writer. She owns her own boutique public relations firm that specializes in the advertising, gaming and software industries. She also teaches at a major design school for fine artists, commercial artists and graphic designers. Bordelon holds a B.A. in international economics and an M.A. in English from Bard College.

    Photo Credits

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