Does Tightening Your Butt Cheeks Help You Tone When Walking?

by Van Thompson, Demand Media
    Regular walks can help you burn calories and sculpt a fabulous rear view.

    Regular walks can help you burn calories and sculpt a fabulous rear view.

    If you're hoping to sculpt a shapely butt, you need to get your glutes -- the muscles of your butt and hips -- in shape. Tightening your butt cheeks targets both your gluteus maximus and gluteus minimus muscles. Over time, this motion can help you strengthen your butt muscles if you do it while you're walking. The added calorie-burning power of walking can also help you lose weight.

    Fitness Basics

    To sculpt the body of your dreams, you'll need to do both muscle-toning activities and cardiovascular exercise. Cardio -- which includes walking -- burns many more calories than targeted training and muscle-sculpting work. Even if you exercise your butt or tighten your cheeks regularly, you won't see results. You might build muscle, but without burning fat, the muscle will be invisible. But walking in conjunction with targeted training can help you get the butt you crave.

    Butt Tightening

    Squeezing your butt cheeks as you walk tones your glutes, and gives them a more intense workout than walking alone. Your gluteal muscles are already involved in walking, because they help to move your thighs forward and support your body. But tightening these muscles engages them more strongly in walking, and can help you get a stronger butt workout.

    Potential Risks

    If you keep your butt cheeks clenched the entire time you walk, you could alter your gait. This can cause back and hip pain. Tightening your butt cheeks also alters the way you move and changes the way your muscles work together as you walk, which can mean that other areas of your body -- particularly your thighs -- get a less strenuous workout. Consequently, it's best to tighten and release your butt cheeks several times for some portion of your walk, but not for your entire workout.

    Other Butt Exercises

    While tightening your butt cheeks can help tone them, other exercises can give you an even more intense butt-shaping workout. Squats help to work your hips, butt and quadriceps, and leaning forward and lifting one leg up and back as you squat can amp up this workout. Hip raises are also effective. Simply lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your butt and hips off the ground, and as you lift, extend one leg up and out.

    About the Author

    Van Thompson is an attorney and writer. A former martial arts instructor, he holds bachelor's degrees in music and computer science from Westchester University, and a juris doctor from Georgia State University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards, including a 2009 CALI Legal Writing Award.

    Photo Credits

    • Dynamic Graphics/Creatas/Getty Images