There are a ton of articles on the market that go over the very best glute workout routines. In reality, even we’ve just a few of them!

So why is this text totally different, you ask?

We will get rid of all of the qualifiers, equivalent to greatest dumbbell glute workout routines or body weight glute workout routines. As a substitute, we will lay out the very best workout routines to construct up essentially the most highly effective muscle group in your physique.

We have constructed this record utilizing EMG and the opinion of specialists within the discipline. We’ll additionally break down all of the rhetoric and nuance so what you have to do to construct massive and robust glutes.

Merely put, should you’re not together with these workout routines in your program, your booty is lacking out.

As a bunch of decrease physique muscular tissues, this group is collectively referred to as glute muscular tissues. It is made up of three distinct muscular tissues that sit (pun supposed) on the posterior of the physique slightly below the hips.

They’re simply the strongest muscular tissues in the complete human physique and are referred to as the powerhouse as a result of their important position in human movement and efficiency. Let’s take a more in-depth take a look at every.


The gluteus maximus, aka glute maximus, is the biggest of the three muscular tissues and the strongest. It is huge and has a number of attachments across the tailbone, pelvis, and erector spinae.

A few of its origins embrace the gluteal floor of ilium, lumbar fascia, sacrum, and sacrotuberous ligament. As well as, some insertions embrace the femur and iliotibial tract.

That is the second largest of your three muscular tissues and sits on the outer portion of your pelvis. A big portion of the gluteus medius is roofed by different muscular tissues, together with the gluteus maximus, which covers 1/3 of the posterior aspect, and the gluteal aponeurosis, which covers 2/3 on the anterior aspect.

Its origins embrace the ilium and gluteus maximus. In contrast to the gluteus maximus, the gluteus medius primarily has one insertion on the femur (higher leg).

The gluteus minimus is the smallest of the three muscular tissues and sits simply beneath the gluteus medius. As a result of its measurement, its origins are solely situated on the ilium’s anterior and inferior gluteal traces. It additionally has a single insertion on the femur.

As an entire, the gluteal muscular tissues management the hips in nearly each movement. Maybe the one motion by which it is not the first mover is hip flexion, but it nonetheless performs a pivotal position in stability throughout this motion.

The perform of the glutes embrace:

  • Straightening the hips as in a deadlift. It additionally contains pulling your leg, equivalent to if you stroll.
  •  Extending the hips previous full extension (torso straight).
  •  From any place, lifting your leg farther out laterally.
  •  Together with your leg straight, rotate your leg outward so your toes level outward. Or, in case your knees are bent, rotate your knee outward so your knee is pointing outward.
  • The glutes additionally play a big position within the total stability of the hips, together with if you’re simply sitting, standing, and even operating. When strolling, the gluteus medius additionally retains your hips from sagging laterally in the course of a stride.

    All three muscular tissues will play an intricate position in all these actions. Nevertheless, if we have been to begin trying on the particular actions, we’d discover that the three muscular tissues play extra of a main mover or stabilizer position.

    The glute max would be the main hip extender, which you’ll be able to see when taking a look at the very best Gluteus Maximus Workouts. Alternatively, the glute medius and glute minimus work collectively as the first hip abductors and exterior rotators, which you’ll be able to see in these round-ups of the very best Gluteus Medius Workouts and Gluteus Minimus Workouts.


    Now let’s dig by a number of the research to see what workout routines you have to be doing. To do that, I am going to primarily examine two variables, EMG readings and cargo lifted.

    We will generally assume the EMG routinely means the very best train, however this is not essentially true. Needless to say EMG merely measures muscle contraction, and in reality, you possibly can generate excessive EMG readings by merely flexing your muscular tissues!

    In actuality, the EMG exhibits to what diploma a muscle is utilized in a motion. Though essential, it should be thought-about along side the load you possibly can raise.  

    The primary, greatest, and most evident train is glute hip thrusts. 

    It is virtually universally agreed upon as the very best glute train as a result of it is an isolation motion that permits a load to be positioned immediately on the hips. And by load, I imply hundreds heavier than you possibly can raise with most different workout routines. Due to this, you want sturdy glutes.

    A examine revealed within the Journal of Utilized Biomechanics in contrast muscle activation throughout the train to muscle activation throughout the again squat. Their measurements confirmed there’s actually no query as to which is healthier.

    In comparison with the again squat, this train had higher higher gluteus maximus imply (69.5% vs 29.4%) and peak (172% vs 84.9%); decrease gluteus maximus imply (86.8% vs. 45.4%) and peak (216% vs. 130%); and biceps femoris (hamstrings) imply (40.8% vs. 14.9%) and peak (86.9% vs. 37.5%)1.

    One other meta from 2020 discovered that out of all workout routines, the hip thrust had the second highest EMG activation with a imply of 75.41% (however the highest was 94%)2. Nevertheless, I put this transfer in first place as a result of its excessive muscle activation and heavy hundreds.

    This train can be the favourite train of Dr. Bret Contreras for coaching the butt muscular tissues. If you do not know Bret Contreras, he is referred to as the Glute Physician, specializing in constructing highly effective glutes.

    • Arrange a bench and a loaded barbell. It’s possible you’ll need to slide the bench in opposition to a wall to maintain it from sliding.
    • Sit on the bottom in entrance of the bench along with your legs straight and again pressed up in opposition to the bench. Place the barbell over your physique immediately over your hips. That is your beginning place.
    • Pull your legs in so your shins are vertical, your knees bent, and your ft flat. You may gently place your palms on both aspect of the barbell.
    • Brace your core and thrust your hips ahead (up). On the identical time, squeeze your glutes and press your ft into the bottom. Assume as should you’re attempting to pull the ground towards you.

      Do not forget that train with the best EMG from the examine above? It is the step up, representing with an insane muscle activation of 120%. Activation is so excessive for 2 essential causes.

      The primary is hip extension, with the leg pulling right down to propel the physique up. Through the step-up, lifting one leg excessive onto a field creates an enormous vary of movement. Subsequently, pulling the physique up and ahead to get the opposite leg to the field turns into a giant problem.

      Second, you want the step-up as a result of it is carried out on one leg, AKA unilaterally. The plain assumption is that this creates extra activation as one leg is answerable for lifting the complete physique. That is one a part of it, however all that does is improve the load, which could possibly be completed by including weight.

      The true motive the unilateral facet spikes activation is the steadiness part. When stepping up, your complete physique rests on one leg, requiring way more stability to finish the motion with out falling over.

      • For the step-up, you will want some kind of raised platform. A health club field works greatest as most assist you to select between three heights. To get essentially the most glute activation, use the tallest platform you possibly can step on with good type. This enables a bigger vary of movement and extra pull.
      • To get into the beginning place, stand in entrance of a field, near it. Choose one foot up and place it ahead so it is utterly on the field. Making an attempt to not push off with the opposite foot, drive one foot ahead down into the field. As a substitute of pushing your physique up, you need to deal with that pulling-down movement, mimicking hip extension.
      • Attempt to preserve your stability as you raise your physique weight till your different leg is up and also you’re standing. Pause for a second after which step backward in reverse order, and take note your physique weight.
      • For instance: Step up along with your proper foot ahead after which your left foot. Step down along with your left foot after which your proper foot. Once you step down, accomplish that in a managed method all the best way down. Do not simply hop off, however benefit from the eccentric contraction.

        The traditional deadlift is one other massive compound motion that permits heavy hundreds with excessive muscle activation. 

        Whereas particular person biomechanics will differ on all workout routines, the deadlift would not require a sure depth, equivalent to getting parallel to the bottom, to finish. In consequence, totally different people will flex their hips and knees as wanted, altering the quantity of glute activation.  

        Research present you’ll obtain anyplace from 35-94% activation. Even these on the decrease finish place an enormous load on the glutes, which is a main think about glute progress.

        • The beginning place is essential, so take time to get it proper. Stand in entrance of a loaded barbell with ft hip-shoulder width aside. Bend down and seize the barbell with an overhand grip simply exterior your legs. Sit your hips again and pull up on the bar as you straighten and tighten your again.
        • Proceed to take a seat again and let your shoulders rise till they sit simply in entrance of the bar along with your arms prolonged straight down. That is your beginning place earlier than each rep.
        • Start the motion by driving your ft down and pulling the bar off the bottom. Concentrate on driving your hips ahead and squeezing your glutes. Because the bar rises in a straight line, your again ought to stay on the identical angle. As soon as the bar passes your knee, then lengthen your again as you goal to get into the standing place. Drive out of that knee bent place till you are standing upright.
        • To decrease the bar, I love to do a gradual eccentric till the bar lowers on the higher thighs for just a few inches after which carry out a managed drop.

          I am going to be sincere. I am a bit biased with the belt squat as I find it irresistible and really feel like not practically sufficient folks do it. Subsequently, I’m thrilled to place the belt squat on this record because it elicits a loopy imply EMG studying of 71.34. In response to the examine I referenced above, the max finish of the vary is 100.76.

          I selected the hip thrust as #1 as a result of its imply EMG being greater, its capability to make use of greater hundreds, and the promotion of the literal “Glute Physician,” Dr. Bret Contreras.

          Nevertheless, the belt squat is unquestionably up there, so it is not value lacking out on. The one profit the belt squat has over the hip thrust is the power to make use of a broader vary of varied foot placements.

          • Ideally, you may have an precise belt squat machine to do that. In case you do not, you should use a dip belt and low packing containers to face on.
          • Whether or not the squat belt machine locations the belt low in your hips so the chain hangs in the course of your legs, the belt ought to be catching in your hip bones.
          • If utilizing a dip belt, arrange two packing containers in order that they’re shut sufficient so that you can use a standard squat stance. Make certain there is a hole in between sufficiently big for weights to drop by. Carry your weights as much as the packing containers and hook up the belt in your hips.
          • Now that you simply’re arrange, the motion is similar no matter what you employ. Stand along with your ft flat and unfold barely wider than hip-width aside and toes identified barely. That is the beginning place.
          • Start the motion by pushing your hips again in the identical method as a squat. Since there isn’t any load in your again, you may have extra freedom with positioning your higher physique. Nevertheless, you continue to need to preserve your torso straight and try to preserve your shoulders over your ankles.
          • Go all the best way down after which energy up by urgent your ft down into the bottom. Proceed till your hips are erect and your torso upright. Because the motion is principally the identical, the truth that the load is on the hips as a substitute of the again alters muscle activation. On this place, the glutes should push the complete load, stopping the erector spinae from getting overly concerned from poor motion patterns.

            Wish to keep away from the effort of belt squat set-up and be capable to simply get proper to it? Listed below are our 3 Finest Belt Squat Machine Choices.

            I am going to change our course of solely utilizing EMG a bit right here. All the above actions are considerably higher glute workout routines than the squat when taking a look at EMG readings. On the evaluation I have been utilizing, the again squat solely has a imply activation of 53.10%

            Each enormous squatter I do know has a large set of glutes. In addition they swear that the squat gave them their powerhouse. With that in thoughts, I am placing this on the record because of the anecdotal proof of testimony from folks a lot stronger than us.

            • Arrange a squat rack with a barbell and cargo it. Stand beneath the bar and situate it in your traps, putting it decrease in your again to hit the glutes higher, because it requires extra hip flexion and extension. Seize either side with an overhand grip barely wider than shoulder-width aside.
            • Unrack the bar and step again and set your ft shoulder-width aside. Push your hips again to decrease your physique. Bend on the knees and barely lean ahead as you come right down to preserve the bar dropping in a straight line. Go down till you hit parallel, then energy again up.
            • Conserving your shoulders pulled again and your core and abs tight is crucial. Additionally, all the time preserve your knee barely bent to stop joint points if you come up.

              Bear in mind, the very best glute workout routines can even be the very best gluteus maximus workout routines, because the gluteus maximus is the biggest and strongest muscle of the three.

              Nevertheless, the gluteus medius and minimus might use a bit additional consideration as they’ve a novel and important position; hip abduction and stability. Subsequently, I need to add these as you will want them to have the very best glutes attainable.

              To remain on theme, nonetheless, we need to practice the glutes as an entire slightly than in isolation, so I am going to additionally record unilateral workout routines. As talked about above with step-ups, a unilateral train calls for extra activation within the gluteus minimus and gluteus medius because of the required additional stabilization.

              Single-leg (unilateral) workout routines are considerably higher at hitting the gluteus medius because it’s required for stabilization. Research have verified this, so you need to all the time have some unilateral coaching in your system. A overview of the very best gluteus medius workout routines discovered the Romanian deadlift to be within the prime tier for the workout routines3.

              Subsequently, mixed with its excessive gluteus maximus activation, this is among the greatest glute workout routines you are able to do that targets huge muscle acquire whereas giving medius and minimus some additional love.

              Single-leg Romanian deadlifts appear simpler for most individuals than the one-legged squat, so it is our first decide.

              This one is a bit tougher to do than the single-leg Romanian deadlift, nevertheless it’s a incredible glute train. In case you’re struggling, you should use single-leg squat modifications, which’ve additionally been examined for gluteus medius and maximus activation.

              In reality, the single-leg wall squat could be the most suitable option for maximal medius and minimus activation as a result of its ease. Each modified and wall squats produce related 65-70% EMG readings4.

              The cut up squat could be the final unilateral train to coach the glutes whereas working the medius and minimus a bit tougher. Research present they attain 70-75% EMG. Maintain two dumbbells as a substitute of a barbell for a loading equipment, or use a belt squat setup if obtainable.

              The Bulgarian cut up squat is another choice, particularly for extra superior athletes. This model is considerably tougher as you retain your again leg on an elevated floor, growing each the steadiness and cargo in your working leg.

              Other than figuring out the very best glute workout routines, there are just a few different components to contemplate along with your glute coaching. 

              Glute isolation workout routines assist to essentially get that mind-muscle connection along with your butt muscular tissues. A number of the greatest isolation workout routines to make use of as a glute finisher are:

              • Again Extensions
              • Standing Cable Hip Abductions
              • Standing Cable Hip Extensions
              • Quadruped Hip Extensions

                I wish to carry out 2-3 units with excessive reps (12-15+). You would additionally run these in a circuit after a decrease physique routine ends.

                Your gluteal muscular tissues are distinctive and persistently activated beneath high and low hundreds. For instance, your glutes are answerable for strolling or just sustaining right posture, in order that they’re working if you’re not even fascinated with it.

                On the identical time, they see intervals of excessive depth, even on a typical day, throughout actions like strolling up the steps swiftly or leaping ahead to catch the door. In contrast with all different muscular tissues, no different group of muscular tissues persistently sees this a lot activation in various methods.

                Because of this, you need to use a variety of hundreds with all of your workout routines. To be clear, I do not imply to make use of heavy hundreds along with your massive compound workout routines and smaller hundreds with accent work. I imply use heavy and light-weight hundreds along with your squats, heavy and light-weight hundreds along with your hip thrusts, heavy and light-weight hundreds along with your step-ups, and many others.

                Along with persistently being beneath totally different hundreds, the glutes are additionally persistently labored with totally different motions and from totally different angles. Because of this, I like utilizing quite a lot of workout routines.

                Your applications ought to all the time function a number of the greatest and greatest butt workout routines, equivalent to squats and hip thrusts. After your prime motion, swap across the accent workout routines inside your program to hit the glutes from all angles. For instance, you would possibly keep on with the principle articles featured right here, however then after 12 weeks, take into account including in Bulgarian cut up squats to maintain your leg progress going.

                Consistency in the principle lifts offers you a base for the development, so I like to make use of these the identical. Then, I am going to range the opposite workout routines, coaching to a particular RPE or failure inside a given rep vary.

                Listed below are the solutions to some often requested questions on coaching these glute muscular tissues.

                If I needed to decide one, the analysis and anecdotal proof says sure. However the very best glute exercise would not function only one train, so your greatest wager is to hit the glutes usually and from quite a lot of angles.

                If it is a decrease physique day, goal to hit one essential glute train (squat variation, deadlift variation, hip thrust, step up) plus 3-5 accent workout routines, relying in your coaching expertise and complete coaching time.

                Skip the ankle weights. Similar to every other muscle, your glutes will develop quickest by coaching with reasonable hundreds for at the least 10 units per muscle group every week.

                Glute progress is not gender-specific. That stated, the very best glute workout routines are those you’ll do persistently, so decide a squat, deadlift, hip thrust, or step-up variation and get to work!

                Similar as above: Choose from our prime 5 (belt and again squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts, and step ups), range your unilateral choices, and practice them 10+ occasions/week, no matter gender.

                In case you’ve been following any of the SET FOR SET applications, you in all probability have already got nice buns as we program all of those workout routines into our exercise routines.

                As you head to the health club able to sort out your glutes, we wish you to do not forget that the very best glute workout routines are usually your massive, lower-body compound actions, as you possibly can raise a big load that calls for muscle progress.

                On the identical time, the very best workout routines practice hip extension, which is the glutes’ main motion sample. If you have not been doing these, it is time to begin. And in case you have, sustain the nice work.

                This is to glute progress!

                On the lookout for an entire glute exercise to construct some severe bottom muscular tissues? Try this Finest Glutes Exercise At Residence! Or, for a full decrease physique routine, you will love this Final Leg Exercise to construct energy and mass.


                1. Contreras, B., Vigotsky, A. D., Schoenfeld, B. J., Beardsley, C., & Cronin, J. (2015). A Comparability of Gluteus Maximus, Biceps Femoris, and Vastus Lateralis Electromyographic Exercise within the Again Squat and Barbell Hip Thrust Workouts. Journal of utilized biomechanics.
                2. Neto, W. Okay., Soares, E. G., Vieira, T. L., Aguiar, R., Chola, T. A., Sampaio, V. L., & Gama, E. F. (2020). Gluteus Maximus Activation throughout Frequent Energy and Hypertrophy Workouts: A Systematic Evaluate. Journal of sports activities science & drugs.
                3. Reiman, M. P., Bolgla, L. A., & Loudon, J. Okay. (2012). A literature overview of research evaluating gluteus maximus and gluteus medius activation throughout rehabilitation workout routines. Physiotherapy idea and apply.