Tuesday, April 30, 2013

get your glutes in check

1: The Chair Squat
The squat is one of the best exercises you can do to engage your glutes, and using a chair helps to ensure you use a full range of motion with great form.
How to do it: Stand in front of a sturdy chair with your feet slightly wider than hip distance apart, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Bend your knees, shift your hips back and pretend you are going to take a seat. Keep your weight in your heels and don't let your knees extend past your toes. Lower down until you are almost touching the chair, and then stand back up.
Form tip: Don't lock your knees when you stand up—always keep them 'soft'

2: The Stationary Lunge
Another classic butt lifter, the split stance of a lunge also adds an additional balance challenge, making your buns work even harder.
How to do it: Start standing, feet together, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Take a big step behind you with your left leg, lifting your left heel off of the floor, keeping most of your weight in your right leg. Slowly bend both knees, lowering your body straight down until both knees make 90-degree angles, being sure to keep your front knee in line with your ankle. Push down through your front heel as you slowly stand back up. (Do 15 reps on both legs).
Form tip: Be sure to keep your front heel pressed into the ground and avoid lunging forward. Always drop down and up out of your lunge instead.

3: The In n' Out Plyo Squat
This challenging move will get your heart pumping and work your fast-twitch muscle fibers (they help with explosive movements) to help shape up your booty fast.
How to do it: (No dumbbells needed for this move.) Start standing with feet slightly wider than hip width apart. Bend your knees and sit hips back into a low squat. Using your arms, jump straight up until both feet leave the ground. Land softly with your feet together, and sit back into a narrow squat position. Repeat your jump again, landing with your feet wide next time. Alternate landing your jumps in a narrow and wide squat, bringing feet in and then out each time you lower.

4: The Curtsy Lunge
A variation on the classic lunge, curtsy lunges are a great way to tone your glutes and legs.
How to do it: Start standing with your feet hip width apart, and then, keeping your weight in your left foot, take a big step back with your right leg, crossing it behind your left leg (as if about to do a 'curtsy'). Slowly bend your knees and lower your body straight down until your front thigh is parallel to the floor, and both knees are bent at 90 degrees. Be sure to keep your abs drawn in and your back straight. Do 15 reps on one side, and then 15 reps on the other

5: The Plie Squat
Ever wonder why ballet dancers have such great backsides? Try this ballet-inspired plie squat to find out!
How to do it: Start standing and hold one dumbbell at either end with both hands, with your feet slightly wider than hip width apart, and your toes turned out about 45 degrees. Lift your heels off the floor, balancing on the balls of your feet, bend your knees, and lower your body straight down, keeping your hips under your shoulders and your back straight. Make sure your knees open over, but not past, your toes as they bend. Slowly straighten back up and then lower your heels.

6: The Walking Lunge
This move works all of your butt muscles and is one of the all-time best tush toners around, Shoemate says.
How to do it: Start standing with feet together, holding dumbbells on top of each shoulder. Take a wide step forward with your right foot as you bend your knees, lowering your body into a lunge. Both knees should bend at a 90-degree angle, and the front thigh should be parallel to the floor, keeping your knee behind your toes. Stand up out of lunge, and step your left foot into your right. Then repeat the move with your left leg. Repeat 15 times total, alternating legs each time

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