Butt Blaster Exercises
In order to tone your tush, sculpt your derriere, or "blast" your butt, you must target your gluteal muscles with a variety of different exercises. You need only a set of dumbbells and a stability ball. Lunges, squats, and stability ball bridge roll-outs are all effective exercises for the buttocks that you can do at home.
Butt Blaster Lunges
A favorite butt-blasting exercise of many personal trainers is the reverse elevated lunge, which targets your gluteus maximus as well as muscles in your thighs and calves. Stand with your back to a 4- to 6-inch-high step, stair, or hearth. Place your right foot behind you on the step, heel up; lunge forward with your left foot, so the knee lines up over the toe. Keep your shoulders back and your spine straight, with your buttocks and abs tucked in. Simultaneously bend both knees, until your back knee reaches a 90-degree angle. At the peak of the contraction, tilt your pelvis forward, squeeze your buttocks in deeper, and hold the contraction as you return to starting position. Perform 20 to 30 repetitions, then switch to your left leg. Repeat the sequence for two to three more sets. Add intensity by holding a pair of dumbbells in your hands. After the last rep on each leg, perform 10 deep, pulsing buttocks contractions to finish off the movement.
Wall Ball Booty Busters
Booty busters use a stability ball as a prop, and should be performed against a solid wall. The ball supports your spine and allows you to effectively strengthen your gluteal muscles as well as your thighs. Place the ball against the wall, behind the arch of your back, so that it fits comfortably between your shoulder blades and butt. Your feet should be in front of your shins, legs straight and spine straight, as you lean back into the ball. Breathe in; then, as you exhale, slowly lower your hips by bending your knees into a squat position so that your knees are in a 90-degree angle. Tilt your pelvis and squeeze your buttocks muscles in deeply. Never allow your hips to go lower than your knees. Pause for a moment, then squeeze your glutes as you return to standing. Perform 20 to 30 repetitions with your knees forward, as if sitting on a chair. Rest for about 30 seconds, then perform 20 to 30 repetitions with your knees opened wider than your hips. Finish off the movement with 10 quick, deep, pulsing glute squeezes.
Butt Boosting Ball Roll-Outs
This exercise uses a stability ball, and, because you will be on your back, you should perform it on a mat or other soft, padded surface. Lie on your back and place your feet hip-distance apart, with knees bent, on top of your stability ball. Place your arms down beside your hips, palms down. Inhale; then, as you exhale, tilt your pelvis and squeeze your glutes as you slowly lift your hips as high as they will go. At the peak of the contraction, you will be resting on your shoulder blades, with your body in a straight line from your knees to your head. Pause for a moment, and then slowly roll the ball away from your hips, until only your heels are on the ball and your body is in one straight line. Keep your back lifted and butt contracted as you roll the ball back to the starting position. Roll out and in for 10 to 20 repetitions; rest, then repeat for two more sets.
Ball Frog and "V" Tush Toners
In the "frog" exercise, lie over the ball on your stomach with your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart. Lift both legs off the ground, bend your knees, and put your heels together, with your toes turned out. Squeeze your buttocks while keeping your heels together and lift your legs up and down about 6 inches. Keep your abdominals tight and your glutes contracted throughout the exercise, being very careful not to arch your back. Perform 20 to 25 repetitions. For the gluteus medius, or side of the buttocks, open your legs to a wide "V" shape. Keep your legs very straight, trying not to bend the knees, and your toes flexed toward the shin. Squeeze the legs out wider, as far as your hips allow, and then close back to the "V" position. The range of motion should be about 6 to 8 inches. Aim for 20 to 25 repetitions.
- Total Body Toning: The At Home Plan; Joely Johnson; 2000
- Stability Ball Training: A Guide For Fitness; Christine Cunningham; 2003
- The Ultimate Body Book; Linda Shelton; 2006
Alison Stellner, owner of Body Tune Personal Training, is a fitness instructor and freelance writer with more than 25 years in the health and fitness industry. Her first professional article was published in "Idea Today Fitness Magazine" in 1993. She majored in music and business administration at the University of Oklahoma.