Bringing up the Rear – Part 2

 Posted by on 02/06/2012
Feb 062012
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So in my first post of this series, Bringing up the Rear – Part 1. I gave a few exercises to help activated the glute muscles. Like I said before, I think that the rear is the most important important muscle when it comes to athletic performance. That’s where all the power comes from.

Now I admit I stand corrected. I said that the bigger the rear the better the athlete. Wrong. Even if you have a big rump, there’s a good chance you have some weak ass glutes.  Many coaches and trainers, including myself, are asked about what exercises will build up the rear.  The usual exercises that will be listed are – deadlifts, lunges, and squats.

No doubt these are a great exercises to incorporate the glutes but what other exercises can we do in order to build up some really STRONG  and SEXY butt clenchers.

I’m going to keep this post real simple for you and explain an exercise and it’s progressions.  Bret Contreras, also known as the “Glute Guy”, is best known for bringing this exercise out and you can find a lot more information about the reasons here.

Hip Thrusts

If you’ve been doing the exercises from Part 1 of Bringing up the Rear, then you should be ready for these. If not then you should start there first. When I first saw this exercise, my first impression was that you basically are humping the air. You’ll see what I mean soon.

I’m a big believer of “don’t knock it until you try it” and since this was coming from Contreras, I figured this has to be something worth experimenting.  So that’s exactly what I did.  After I completed my first rep, I was sold.  ”Hello ass muscles!”. I’ve never done an exercise where I felt that hard of a contraction in my glutes.  The rest of the day I felt like I was walking around with a damn bubble butt – not saying that it was a bad thing. I hear chicks dig guys with bubble butts.

So what the hell is the Hip Thrust? No worries, I gotcha.

Of course with everything, I always like to start with just body weight in order to get comfortable with the movement before you add more resistance.

How to Perform the Hip Thrust

The Hip Thrust  can be simply done using just a bench.  Set the middle of your upper back on the bench. Keep you spine aligned throughout the whole movement, including your neck.  Drive through your heals, squeeze your glutes up, and push your hips up to towards the ceiling . Kinda like you’re humping the sky. Then return back to the starting position.

Keep Alignment

Now from here  you can progress on to different variations.  After you become familiar with this movement, you can perform them unilaterally.

So once you’ve mastered these two movements with just your body weight and probably have a pretty damn good looking butt – or at least feel like it is. You can now progress onto adding more resistance. Make sure you aren’t using too much weight that you can’t get your hips fully extended. DISCLAIMER: If you can’t reach full hip extension, lower the damn weight so you’re not in lumbar hyperextension and jack up your lower back. If I get an email or comment mentioning your back is sore. I’m just going to laugh at you. (done with my tough love rant).

Adding resistance can be done in several ways. You can use a barbell, resistance bands, dumbbells, plates, even another person – although you may get kicked out for vulgar behavior. But hey, it’s your life. Check these videos out on adding resistance.

Here are a few videos from Ben Bruno:

Barbell Hip Thrusts

Single Leg Barbell Hip Thrust:

This exercise should be part of everybody’s program after you have worked on your glute activation exercises from Part 1. Add Hip Thrust in to your routine will not only increase your strength or speed, but will also bring sexy back.

Brent Contreras
Ben Bruno

for the great videos and information.


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