What Are The Best Glute Exercises (You Can Do At Home)?
Updated: Feb 16
Want to improve your glutes? If so, then I’ve got some info you may find interesting!
In a study, published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, researchers had 21 physically-active people perform 12 different bodyweight exercises to train the glutes. While the trainees performed the exercises, the researchers measured the muscle activity of their gluteus medius and maximus. Basically, they wanted to see which exercises stimulated these muscles the most.
The exercises in question are listed below:
1. Clam w/ 30 Degree Hip Flexion
2. Clam w/ 60 Degree Hip Flexion
3. Forward Hop
4. Forward Lunges
5. Lateral Band Walk
6. Reverse Hop
7. Reverse Lunges
8. Side Lunges
9. Side-Lying Hip Abduction
10. Sideways Hop
11. Single-Limb Deadlifts
12. Single-Limb Squats
I should mention that I was a little surprised by this list as there would seem to be some glaring omissions (e.g., glute bridges [shown in the pic], hip thrusts, and glute kickbacks).
Unfortunately, these exercises didn’t make the list, but if you’ve done them, then you’ll know that these can give you a serious ass whopping (pun deliberately and shamefully intended). Anyways, I’d keep that in mind, especially if you’re looking to bring up your glutes.
Ok, so let’s look at the results.
The top 5 exercises for stimulating the gluteus medius were:
1. Side-Lying Hip Abduction
2. Single-Limb Squats
3. Lateral Band Walk
4. Single-Limb Deadlifts
5. Sideways Hop
The top five exercises to stimulate the gluteus maximus were:
1. Single-Limb Squats
2. Single-Limb Deadlifts
3. Reverse Lunges
4. Forward Lunges
5. Side Lunges
Just keep in mind that I wouldn’t necessarily discount the other exercises. Any of these exercises can be useful (and may be better suited for you). It just depends on how it’s programmed.
Also, remember, what I said about the glute bridges, hip thrusts, and glute kickbacks or even variations of them. However, if you’re looking to challenge both muscles in a workout, then, as you can see, Single-Limb Deadlifts and Squats will stimulate them to a greater degree.
I’d just be sure you’re capable of performing these exercises before jumping right into them. They’re both relatively advanced movements.
And now you know. :-)
For more information:
Distefano, LJ. et al. Gluteal muscle activation during common therapeutic exercises. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2009 Jul; 39(7): 532-40.