The Best Ways to Tone and Firm Your Glute Muscles

Get toned glutes with muscle firming exercises like squats.

Get toned glutes with muscle firming exercises like squats.

The gluteal muscles, or buttocks, are a trouble spot for many women, in need of toning and firming up. A lack of exercise, unhealthy diet and aging can lead to gluteal sagging and loose buttocks. You can firm up your glutes with cardiovascular exercise and specific toning exercises designed to tighten and strengthen your backside. Start your gluteal program today to get a butt that looks beautiful in jeans.

Cardio

Cardiovascular exercise is key to firming up your butt since aerobic exercise burns calories for weight loss. Although it's impossible to spot reduce fat loss, losing weight in general will aid in decreasing fat in trouble spots such as the glutes in addition to the belly, thighs and waist. Engage in aerobic exercises that use the gluteal muscles repetitively such as running, hiking, climbing stairs and cycling. All of these exercises contract the glutes when the hip is flexed, extended and abducted, which leads to muscle toning. Perform cardio exercise three to five times a week for 30 to 45 minutes each for fitness and weight-loss benefits.

Squats

Squats are an effective lower-body strengthening exercise that will tone the glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings and abdominal region. As you squat, it's important to keep your knees over your toes by sticking your butt out. This requires the gluteal muscles to contract during the squatting motion and stabilize the body to prevent you from rocking too far forward or back. Perform a squat by standing tall with feet hip-width apart and arms by your sides. Keeping your abdominal muscles engaged, bend your knees to squat down so your knees are over your toes and your butt is sticking out behind you. Pause before rising to the start position. Repeat 10 times and complete a total of three sets.

Lunges

Lunges help to tone up the gluteal muscles. Perform this exercise at the gym or at home with no equipment, or add dumbbells in each hand to increase body-weight resistance. Stand tall with your feet together and hands on your hips. Take a large step forward with your left leg landing so the left knee is directly above the left ankle. Your knee should not extend past your toes or bend greater than 90 degrees, as this increases strain on the knee joint. Lower your body straight down until the back right knee is only inches away from the floor. Pause before pushing back up into the starting position and repeat with the right leg forward. Perform 10 to 20 reps on each leg for three sets total.

Bridging

Target the gluteal muscles with bridging. Bridging tones the glutes, hamstrings and abdominal region for an effective lower-body firming exercise. Perform this exercise by lying on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor and hip-width apart. Arms should be extended by your sides with palms facing down touching the floor. Tighten your gluteal muscles as you lift your hips off the floor to raise your pelvis toward the ceiling. Pause at the top of the motion before lowering back down to the starting position in a slow, controlled manner. Repeat 10 times for a total of three sets.

 

About the Author

Jennifer Andrews specializes in writing about health, wellness and nutrition. Andrews has a Master of Science in physical therapy from the University of Alberta as well as a bachelor's degree in kinesiology. She teaches yoga and pilates and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.

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