Glute Workouts for Women

8 Tips to Build Better Glutes

Bikini pro and Olympia and Arnold champion Ashley Kaltwasser offers up key advice for strengthening your backside.

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Warmer weather is just around the corner, which means we’ll be trading our jeans and sweatpants for bikinis and shorts. Check out my top tips for training your glutes for a rounder, fuller bottom!

Use Your Mind-Muscle Connection


Don’t just go through the motions. Think about the exercise you are performing. It’s easy to lose focus when you’re on your last few sets. Concentrate on which muscle you should be activating and where you are feeling the burn. 

Vary Your Feet Placement


Instead of keeping your toes forward, place them out at an angle. Try widening your stance as well as narrowing your stance. These will work exceptionally well with squats and deadlifts! You also can do one-legged reps. When lunging, don’t forget to try diagonal lunges and curtsy lunges.   

Pre-Exhaust Your Glutes


Try a quick high-rep, low-weight set of a glute exercise before you begin your workout. An example would be doing 20 cable kickbacks (each leg).

Vary Reps and Weight


Don’t let your glutes become accustomed to a certain weight/rep amount. It’s always good to switch things up and surprise your body. This is also great as a mental refresher, too, leaving you far less bored with your regimen.   

Keep Weight in Your Heels


You may not be thinking much of it, but focusing on pushing your weight through your heels can significantly increase the activation of your glute and hamstring muscles for certain exercises such as squats, lunges and deadlifts.    

Incorporate Glutes Into Your Cardio Regimen


Instead of standard running on the treadmill, why not try walking lunges on an incline on the same machine? You may find that this will take less time, and you will certainly feel the burn. I’m also a fan of the StepMill (don’t hold on) and Jacobs Ladder. These machines do a fantastic job of activating the glutes if used properly. 

Keep Your Toes in Line With Your Knees


Take this tip to prevent injury and get the maximum result from your lifting. Make sure your knees don’t bend in or out. If this happens, consider lowering the weight so that your form doesn’t suffer.   

Incorporate Plyos in the Mix


Plyometric exercises are great for tightening and toning your glutes. Not only are they convenient to perform, they also can be done almost anywhere and can get your heart rate up. Plyos can be an efficient pre-exhaust exercise, as well. 

Here’s an example of an energizing glute workout you can try:

*Pre-exhaust your glutes with 20 cable kickbacks on each leg.

4×10 leg press (shoulder-width stance, feet high on the sled)

4×10 prone hamstring curl (each leg)

3×10 pistol squat (each let)

3×10 straight-leg deadlift (wide-leg stance)

3×10 sumo squat with dumbbell (wide stance)

3×10 plyo box jump

3×10 one-leg deadlift with dumbbell

3×10 curtsy lunge (each leg)

3×10 vertical leg press

3×10 glute bridge on stability ball

Ready to get glutes like Ashley? The Ashley Kaltwaser Challenge will guide you through a fitness and nutrition program that has helped her secure three Bikini Olympia and two Arnold Bikini International championship titles! For more details, click here.