The Best 6 Exercises to Build your Glutes

The Best 6 Exercises to Build your Glutes

It's often asked when you are trying to build your glutes, how to do so without building your quads. No matter what, your quads will get worked as a secondary muscle in most exercises. The goal is to minimize that as much as possible and focus solely on the glutes if you want to build them into a nice shape and grow them. 
Especially since I have grown mine over time into what they are today, I will say that these are my favorite exercises to do in a lot of my glute-focused workouts. 

Hip Thrusts

Top Knot Strong Hip Thrusts

  • Use a bench or plyo box in picture with one dumbbell 
  • Place the upper back flat on the edge of the bench/box and your feet hip width apart on the ground far enough away that when you perform the exercise and your hips are raised, your knees are bent to 90 degrees
  • Starting with the hips down towards the ground only bending at the hips, raise them up to the top and squeeze the glutes for every single rep
  • You can also use an ez-bar or barbell for the weight on your hips if you want to change out the dumbbell and even to be able to go heavier too 


High Step Ups

Top Knot Strong High Step Ups

  • These are great because it forces you to use your hamstrings and glutes to help you in stepping up onto the box or bench
  • Start without weight until you feel comfortable with doing these high step ups
  • Standing in front of the box or bench with feet slightly apart, place one foot flat on the platform you are using, bench slightly forward at the hips and use that front leg to push into the platform and come up to standing placing the second foot flat on the platform too. 
  • Keep the first leg up there and step the second leg back down to repeat through again
  • Then be sure to repeat on the opposite side!


Single Leg Deadlifts

Top Knot Strong Single Leg Deadlifts

  • I find that most clients feel this one a lot more in their glutes than anything else which is exactly what we are going for.
  • Start standing with feet slightly apart and toes pointed forward, shift all of your weight to one side
  • Hold one dumbbell on the opposite side of the standing leg that you placed all of your weight on
  • While bending forward at the hips while keeping the dumbbell close to the standing leg, kick the leg on the same side as the one you are holding the dumbbell on straight back to help keep your balance and engage your core
  • Repeat on the opposite side


Weighted Donkey Kicks

Top Knot Strong Weighted Donkey Kicks

  • One all fours with hands directly under your shoulders and shoulder-width apart, also with knees directly under your hips and hip-width apart on the ground
  • Place one lighter dumbbell behind the bend of your knee on one side, keep the back flat by looking a couple inches in front of your hands in the middle on the ground
  • Raise the leg with the dumbbell up, keeping the knee bent to 90 and the foot up towards the ceiling, then lower back down for each rep
  • Repeat on opposite side 


Single Leg Hip Bridge

Top Knot Strong Single Leg Hip Bridge

  • Bosu Ball is optional, but gives the added benefit of balance and I find I am able to raise my hips a little higher being able to squeeze and activate my glutes a little more
  • Place back flat on the ground with arms down at each side, then place one foot on the bosu ball or flat on the ground
  • Raise the hips up off of the ground towards the ceiling pushing into the heel, squeeze the glutes at the top
  • Repeat on opposite side


Romanian Deadlift

Top Knot Strong Romanian Deadlift

  • Use an ez-bar, two dumbbells, or a barbell depending on your experience and the weight you want to use
  • Start standing with feet hip-width apart and toes pointed forward, hold the ez-bar shoulder width apart, on top of your thighs overhand
  • Focus on primarily just bending forward at the hips while keeping your back flat and keeping a slight bend in your knees
  • Run the weight down in front and close to your legs, raise back up using the glutes and squeeze them at the top when you return to standing


These are great exercises that you can do that require little equipment and no machines. So you can do these in the gym or even at home if you want to. 

Let us know what you think! Do you already do most of these in your current routine? 

If you are lost on what to do and what will work for you to build your glutes, let Top Knot Strong help with our 10 Week Build a Booty Program! 

Our 10 Week Build a Booty Program is great for those who really want to dial everything in and help build the glutes while still also working the entire body at the same time! 

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