There are three major muscles that make up gluteal muscles: gluteus maximus, minimus and medius. In order to properly train your glutes, you must find out which of the muscle areas you are lacking in to achieve fuller, rounder glutes.

1. HIP THRUSTS ON SMITH MACHINE – 4 x 15 to 20

I like to do these on the Smith machine because you can go heavier while the smith machine holds you in place, which will isolate the glutes.

Pointers
• Try reducing the weight at first and going very slow.
• Hold at the top for 2 to 3 seconds and squeeze as hard as you can.
• Make sure you get your hips as high as possible without hyperextending.
Advanced Pointers
• Try adding resistance bands around your knees to target more of the medius.
• Try adding a yoga block between your knees if you aren’t feeling this exercise in the right places. (This should be a glute-dominant exercise)
• Try squeezing for 30 seconds at the top on the last rep to feel an extra burn.

2. CRAB WALKS WITH RESISTANCE BANDS AROUND KNEES – 3 x 10 down & 10 back

Pointers
• Put a heavy resistance band just above your knees and get in the squat position. Slowly crab walk to the left, staying in the squat position, for 10 steps and slowly walk to the right for 10 steps.
• Stay in the squat position! This will isolate the medius.
Advanced Pointers
• When your resistance band gets too easy, try adding a second band around your ankles.

3. CURTSY SQUATS – 3 x 15 each leg

Pointers
• I like to do these with kettlebells because dumbbells tend to get in the way for this particular exercise.
• Make sure your toes are in your body’s natural alignment so you do not hurt your knees.
• Play around with your foot placement if you aren’t feeling it primarily in your glutes. You will also feel your quads, but this is a glute-dominant exercise.
• Do one leg 15 times then switch to the other leg.
Advanced Pointers
• Try on the Smith machine–you will be able to go heavier and isolate more of your glutes.

4. CABLE KICKBACKS WITH BENCH – 3 x 15 each leg

Pointers
• You can either keep your leg straight for the entire kickback, or you can bend at the knee and kickback. These are two separate exercises that I like to switch around from time to time.
• Place the bench right next to you and kneel on it while hanging onto the cable machine. This will allow your range of motion to increase, which isolates your glutes more.
Advanced Pointers
• Play around with different types of kicks–they will target different areas of your glutes.

5. HIP ABDUCTION – 3 x 15 

Pointers
• Use your gym’s hip abduction machine.
Advanced Pointers
• I always do a modified version of this exercise: hold onto the backrest and slightly lift yourself about 1 inch off the seat while performing this exercise. This will target more muscles in your glutes because you are creating constant tension in more areas than just your abductors.

6. BURNOUT BODYWEIGHT KICKBACKS AND FIRE HYDRANTS – 2 x 25 

Pointers
• I always end a good workout with a lower resistance, burnout set.
• Grab a mat and kick more up instead of straight out 25 times per leg, and immediately after perform fire hydrants 10 times per leg.
Advanced Pointers
• Try adding the resistance band from before just above your knees for the fire hydrants.
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