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Glute Workouts for Women

Heidi Powell’s Banded Glute Workout

Use bands to take your glute workout to the next level.

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Heidi Powell literally created something out of nothing when it comes to her glutes, a transformation that she herself describes as “mind-blowing.” This workout represents a compilation of her favorite movements and how she incorporates bands to increase the difficulty level of each set.

“I truly believe that the biggest difference in my booty came about when I started banding my moves,” says Powell, who incorporates a resistance-band loop into many of her exercises. “The bands force your muscles to engage differently and really works your medial glutes, which give you that heart shape and create a figure.”

After a warm-up that includes five to 10 minutes of cardio and dynamic stretching, perform the moves in the order outlined in the chart. Post-session, spend five to 10 minutes stretching the large muscles of your glutes, quads, hamstrings and back. Do this workout once a week as you get used to the band, then add another session for optimal results.

The Workout

Exercise Sets Reps/Time Rest (seconds)
Banded Barbell Back Squat 5 + 15, 15, 12, 10, 10 90
Banded Romanian Deadlift
– superset with –
Princess Lunge With Kettlebell
4 15

8 (each side)
Banded Barbell Hip Thrust
– superset with –
Side Squat Walk
– superset with –
Abducting Ball Roll-In
3 20

20 (each direction)

15, 12, 10
Pop Squat 5 30 seconds (AMRAP**) 60

*This does not include one or two warm-up sets with light weight for 15 to 20 reps.

+Increase your weight for each set.

**As Many Reps As Possible

(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Banded Barbell Back Squat

Recommended band: L/XL

Heidi says: “Make sure your knees are tracking over your toes, even with the band around your legs. If they are not, decrease the weight you’re using so you can maintain proper form.”

Setup: Hold a barbell across your upper back and traps — not your neck — and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes turned out slightly. Your elbows should be pointing down, your focus forward and your core braced.

Move: Kick your hips back, then bend your knees and lower your glutes toward the floor. Descend for a count of two until your hip crease comes below your knee. Hold at the bottom for three seconds, then rise back to the start.

Tip: Keep your chest lifted to keep your weight in your heels, especially during the hold at the bottom.

(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Superset: Banded Romanian Deadlift

Recommended band: S/M

Heidi says: “I love the band for this move because it wakes up my hamstrings and glutes and makes them fire first, taking the back out of the picture.”

Setup: Secure your band and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold a barbell in front of your thighs with your arms extended, holding it either with an overhand or alternating grip (shown).

Move: Keeping your back flat, hinge at your hip and slowly lower the barbell, keeping it close to your body and pressing outward against the band to keep your knees in position. Lower to knee level or just below, then rise slowly to the start, squeezing your glutes at the top.

Tip: The depth to which you lower depends on your individual flexibility. If your back starts to round, you’ve gone too far.

Princess Lunge
(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Princess Lunge with Kettlebell

Heidi says: “Do these on a step or platform to give you a little more depth: Stand on top, then step behind and off the step to the side, trying to touch your knee to the floor.”

Setup: Hold a kettlebell in a goblet position (with both hands in front of your chest, elbows down), and stand with your feet hip-width apart.

Move: Keeping your hips square and your chest lifted, take a large step behind and on the diagonal with one foot, bending both knees and lowering until your back knee touches or almost touches the floor. Step back to the start and continue, alternating sides.

Tip: Don’t step too far to the diagonal because this will cause your hips and shoulders to twist. Play with the distance until you find a spot where you can keep your hips square and still hit those glutes hard.

Barbell Thrust
(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Giant Set: Banded Barbell Hip Thrust

Recommended band: L/XL

Heidi says: “I prefer to do these on a bench instead of the floor because you get a bigger range of motion and can really hit those deep glutes the most.”

Setup: Secure your band, then sit with your upper back against the end of a flat bench and hold a barbell in your hip crease with both hands. Your knees should be bent, feet flat and placed shoulder-width apart, toes forward.

Move: Hold the barbell steady as you simultaneously press your hips upward while pressing your knees outward against the band until your hips come level with your knees. Pause briefly, then slowly lower to almost the start before going into the next rep.

Tip: Play with your foot position to target different areas of your glutes.

Side Squats
(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Side Squat Walk

Recommended band: S/M

Heidi says: “Try to go both directions without standing up. If the burn is too hot, shake it out for a few seconds, but get right back to it. Chip away!”

Setup: Stand with your feet together and secure a band above your knees. Kick your hips back and squat down until your hip crease comes below your knee.

Move: Hold this low squat as you walk to the side one direction for 20 steps, then the other direction for 20 steps.

Tip: Keep your chest lifted and your weight in your heels to best hit your glutes.

Ball Roll 2

Ball Roll
(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Abducting Ball Roll-In

Recommended band: L/XL

Heidi says: “I turn my feet out a little on top of the ball so that when I press outward against the band, my knees track over my toes.”

Setup: Secure your band, then lie on the floor with your heels, ankles and calves on top of a stability ball. Lift your hips to align with your head and heels, and extend your arms along your sides.

Move: Keep your hips lifted as you roll the ball in toward your glutes while simultaneously pressing your knees out against the band. Pause at the top before rolling slowly back to the start.

Tip: If you’re having trouble balancing, tighten your core muscles to stabilize your lower body and take some of the “weight” off the ball.

Jump Up Squats
(Photo: Cory Sorensen)

Pop Squat

Heidi says: “You can also do this move on top of a step: Add one or two risers and stand on top. Jump your feet down on either side into your squat so your butt just barely touches down, then jump back up on top.”

Setup: Stand with your feet together, arms at your sides.

Move: Jump your feet apart (toes forward) and land in a deep squat. Spring up as high as you can into the air, then land with your feet together, knees slightly bent. Repeat right away.

Tip: Always land softly with bent knees when doing explosive movements to protect your joints.