It could be said that a nicely-toned tush is one of the top accessories for 2019 but making sure your jeans fit in style isn’t the only reason to take up hip and glute exercises. Let’s learn more about the underlying benefits of a firm behind, and the top activities you can do to get one.
Why you should do that hips and glutes workout
While many fitness fanatics care about the glutes, your bum muscles, the hips are often left forgotten about…until there is a problem. You see, alongside your glutes and core muscles, your hips play a vital role in your fitness and well-being.
Undertaking exercises to strengthen your glutes and hips can have numerous benefits not just now but far, far in the future. Here are the five most important reasons you need to include hip and glutes exercises in your workout.
1. Increases your overall fitness
Your hips play a significant role in your overall flexibility. Ensuring the muscles in this area are tones prepares your body not only for day-to-day life but in your other exercise activities too..
2. Strengthens your lower back muscles
Building up your glutes and strengthening your hips supports the surrounding areas and this includes your lower back. This benefit is especially relevant for those suffering sciatica as it ensures the spinal nerve remains supported.
3. Builds stability
Your hip and glute muscles form an essential part of your overall balance system, alongside the muscles of your core and legs. By combining exercises that target these areas into your routine, you are building your body’s stability and strength.
4. Boost your running ability
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, your hip and glute muscles are a crucial part of your body’s support system, hip and glute exercises for runners are essential to help you prevent from injury when you are running. Sometimes you may feel sports-related injuries in your foot, leg or arm; however, you may find its origin at waist-level, so don’t wait for accidents to happen––prepare first.
5. Prepares your body for the future
As we age, no matter how much we don’t want our bodies to deteriorate, when we’re older a broken hip or leg, can really set us back. Keeping your body in shape when you're younger paves the way for a healthier future by lessening the effects of muscle and bone degradation.
How to strengthen your hips and glutes––top 5 exercises
Now that you’re convinced hip and glute are the way to go, let us introduce you to the best exercises for glutes and hip that you can do at home, the gym, or even at work.
1. Single leg squats
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, ensure your base is stead and then raise one leg up, holding the thigh level with your hip while leaving the lower leg to hang down.
With the other leg squat downward slowly, bending at the knee, before rising up again. Repeat with this leg four to five times, then switch your legs to ensure you build tone evenly.
2. Side lying leg lifts
Grab your yoga mat and lie on your side, your arm should be bend at the elbow under you, supporting your upper body.
Now, using your top leg, raise it up as straight and high as you can, before lowing it back down. You should feel a pull in your hips and inner thigh muscles.
For this exercise, you can add ankle weights or an exercise band to increase the intensity of the workout.
3. Hip bridges
Perfect for building those lower back muscles. Lie flat on your back on an exercise mat. Next, bend your knee, while keeping your feet on the floor, as if preparing to do a sit up.
Now, slowly raise your hips towards the sky, you should feel a stretch in your lower back and tightness across your thigh. Hold this position for six to ten second, breathe and release. Repeat several times, as often as possible.
This one is a classic for a reason. No matter which squat you choose to do––wide, narrow, classic––you’ll be working your lower back, glute, and hip muscles all at once.
For a classic squat, stand with your feet slightly more than shoulder-width apart, keeping your back straight, lower yourself down into a seated position. Hold for two to three seconds before rising again. Repeat as necessary.
One of the quintessential exercises that should make up part of any routine, the key to a lunge is ensuring your back remains straight at all times. Start by standing with your feet together, keeping your core strong. Step forward with the first leg, so both knees are bent at a 90º angle––one with the thigh parallel to the floor, the other with the lower leg parallel to the floor.
Then step back into the standing position and repeat for 10-12 reps on each leg.