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Watch: Total booty workout - 6 ways to build a better bum

Belfast PT Alan Waterman demonstrates the ultimate bum workout.

By Alan Waterman

Glutes, bum, butt, booty... whatever you want to call it, one of the biggest trends in the fitness industry at the minute has many trainees working at building a better behind.

But many of us struggle to do it, or are disappointed with the progress we see, and it's often because we're not implementing the best exercises to maximize results.

You've maybe heard that squats are the best way to go about getting a better bum? Think again.

Although squats can be an effective exercise to contribite towards glute growth, it's a relatively poor choice compared to some other much more glute-focused movements out there.

So, what's the best way to go about training your behind? Check out the video for six of my top bum-building exercises, and a total glute workout for you to take away and try yourself.

1. The Glute Bridge

One of the best booty-builders about, as it demands a high level of work from the glutes.

We must remember to flatten our backs against the floor to properly get our glutes into action (you'll feel your abs tighten up, too) and help us prevent any lower back strain.

Turn your toes out a little to feel it just that little bit extra.

2. The Hip Thrust

The big brother of the glute bridge, and a more effective exercise for many, but may need some reconsideration for any lower back-pain sufferers who struggle to hold their positioning throughout.

Working to bring the hips up level with the shoulders as we roll back onto the bench places a bigger demand on the glutes than the Glute Bridge (due to the bigger range of motion,) and allows us to also get a more pronounced stretch as we drop back down to our starting position of each rep.

3. Back Extensions

Quite unfortunately named, as many take that to mean that we should feel the lower back doing most of the work throughout the movement. However, this is not the case, and can easily lead to injury.

Instead, we want to use the contraction of the glutes and hamstrings to help us "hinge" through each rep, placing the demand on them, rather than the lower back.

Keeping he toes turned out can help us feel the glutes engage ever so slightly more, as can letting the upper back round off ever so slightly.

4. Bulgarian Split Squats

An incredibly challenging single-leg exercise, but can be turned into a real targeted glute exercise, which is so effective it will leave you struggling to sit down for days.

Making sure to keep the torso leaning forward throughout the movement forces the hips back into a stretch, which will really get the glutes working at the bottom of each rep.

Be careful of letting the hips shoot up and instead focus on keeping them pinned towards the floor, to keep the glutes properly engaged during the movement.

5. Donkey Kicks

A great movment because they force the main portion of the glutes to work in one of their purest functions (which we call "Hip Extension.")

It's important to keep the torso and hips as stable as possible, whilst keeping the back flat, as we  an easily start to take work away from the glutes (where we want to keep it).

Allow the leg to lift out slightly to the side, and keep the toe turned away to the outside to really engage the glutes and help take this exercise to the next level.

6. Side Lying Leg Raise

It's very easy to forget that the glutes are a big muscle group, and extend right the way round the side of the hip.

In fact, it's often an area which is neglected with glute training, but building it up can help add even more shape to your behind.

Working through a larger range of motion by performing the Side Lying Leg Raise movement off a bench will really hit these muscles hard, and provide a bigger challenge.

We must remember to keep our pelvis from rolling during this movement and aim to keep our body and hips nicely aligned, as this will help keep the tension squarely on the side of hip.

Total Glute Workout

  1. Hip Thrust: 3 x 5 reps
  2. Bulgarian Split Squat (with forward lean): 3 x 6-8 reps each
  3. Glute Bridge: 3 x 8-10 reps
  4. Back Extension: 2 x 12-15 reps
  5. Donkey Kicks: 2 x 12-15 reps each
  6. Side Lying Leg Raise (off bench): 2 x 20-30 reps each

Make sure to check out the Facebook page for more tips and advice, as well as further details of Phoenix's October fitness open day, where you can discover what some of the most successful local fitness businesses have to offer.

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