Activating or ‘firing up’ the glutes increases the amount of work done by our glute muscles when performing exercises which also employ the glutes (lunges, squats, deadlifts). When the glutes are inactive, the body will utilize other muscles to perform the movements instead.
Here are 3 of the top glute activation exercises you can knock out in less than 10 minutes before hitting the squat rack.
I like to do all 3 then repeat for 2-3 sets.
- Glute Bridge
Lying on your back with your hands by your sides, legs bent and heels positioned firmly on the floor, toes up, keep hips stable while you raise them off the floor, squeezing your glutes. Lower your hips back down to the floor and repeat for 20 reps.
*kick it up a notch by performing single leg glute bridges. Extend one leg outwards keeping it off the ground as you lift with the opposite leg for 20 reps then switch.
Lying on your right side with your legs slightly bent, resting on top of each other, you can rest your head on your arm or prop your head onto your right hand. Keeping your feet together, raise your left knee off of your right until you cannot lift your left knee anymore without separating your feet. Squeeze the glutes as you lift. Slowly lower your leg to bring your knees together again. Perform 20 reps on each side.
*place a band around the knees when performing this exercise to create more tension.
3. Frog Pumps
Start by getting into the glute bridge position. Tucking your chin into your chest and digging elbows into the ground, put the bottoms of your feet together and bring heels as close to your butt as possible. Bridge as you squeeze your glutes then slowly lower back down. Perform 20 reps.