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Total Body Wellness: Bust Your Booty

Total Body Wellness: Bust Your Booty
If your bottom doesn't feel very itsy bitsy in that teeny weeny bikini, keep reading. Our fitness columnist shares the best exercises out there to tone and lift.


The female equivalent of a man's bicep is their glutes. While men are busy with bicep curls preparing for long days at the pool, most women are searching for ways to tone, lift, sculpt and even diminish their derriere.

 

Your butt muscles are an extension of your leg. You use them walking, sitting, standing and lots more all day long. A strong rear will make everything you do throughout the day easier because it's a large muscle group, and extra bonus: It'll also increase the amount of calories burned during cardio exercises.

 

There are four simple exercises that I recommend for anyone looking to tone their butt.

 

1. Squats: What can I say, this is simply one of the best exercises you can do for your hips, butt and thighs. Period. The movement is very functional, meaning that squatting will translate into strengthening your day-to-day activities.

 

When squatting, stand with feet shoulder width apart. Bend at the knees and lower yourself like you're sitting in a chair, keeping the knees on the same track as the toes. It'll probably feel weird at first, like you're sticking your butt out too far, but that's actually perfect. Remember to keep the torso upright, parallel to the wall.

 

2. Lunges: These are a great exercise because they engage many muscles at the same time while incorporating balance and coordination. The more muscles you can incorporate into an exercise, the better.

 

Start by standing straight up and extending one foot in front of you. Bend your front and rear legs until your back knee is about one inch off the floor. Your front heal should be right below your knee. Push off and return to starting position.

 

Some people hurt their knee while lunging because of bad form. The knee should not track from side to side, the joint was not meant to move like that and can cause injury.

 

3. Deadlifts: Women often shy away from this great exercise. They are wonderful for engaging hamstrings, butt and lower back. Form is crucial during this exercise and if you have low back issues you need a good trainer and a great chiropractor.

 

Setting up for your deadlift by approaching the bar or weights, stand with feet directly below where your femur inserts into your hip. With the weights in front of you, bend at the hips and lower the weights as low as your flexibility allows. Keep your back flat and abdominals contracted. Squeeze the glutes and raise back up to starting position.

 

4. Leg Curls: These bad boys target the hamstring and help to lift the butt. Hamstrings are often neglected in the gym, but it's important to keep them strong. To perform, lie stomach down on a bench and hold a 10-pound weight between your feet. Bend at the knees and bring your ankles in toward your butt, making sure that your hips stay flat on the bench and your rear doesn't rise up in the air. Slowly bring it back down and return to start.

 

And for goodness sakes, don't do all this and then take the elevator up to the top floor. Taking steps two at a time is an awesome way to stretch and engage your glutes.

Ashley Berlin -

Ashley Berlin is the health and fitness columnist for Cincy Chic and the owner of BEAT Personal Training in West Chester. Want more information about something you read here? Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>


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