Bonus: Access this new eBook and video primer with any order over $49 using code
glute15 at checkout.
Your butt muscle, aka the gluteus maximus, should be the largest and strongest muscle in your body (1). Your glutes help stabilize your spine, keeping everyday movements pain free.
Sadly, for many, the glutes are atrophied and weak. Atrophy of the glutes is linked with low back pain. (2) Even more, the size of the glutes is correlated with the size of the main stabilizing muscle of the spine, the multifidus.
Although there’s many exercises that target the glutes; squats, lunges, and hip-hinging style movements like deadlifts come to mind, many people find these intimidating.
I’ve found my clients are often worried about their achy knees, back and such. This is why the hip thrust is nice: it targets the glutes and muscles of the posterior chain (backside) with minimal risk. (Just be careful to not hyperextend your hips at the top of the movement, ad demonstrated above.)
Many gyms now have Hip Thruster machines as part of their equipment offerings and at-home units can be purchased for $397.
But for an adventurous do-it-yourselfer you can easily build your own at-home unit that can be stored in a closet when you’re done with use.
The DIY Hip Thruster provides for five more inches of hip flexion, placing more tension and thus muscle activation of the glutes.
It’s easy to make with two 2X4’s and some cedar decking.
Give this link a try if you’re interested in making your own at home DIY Hip Thurster that can be used several days a week to help support the strength of your glutes and keep back-pain away.
ITO, J., MORIYAMA, H., INOKUCHI, S., & GOTO, N. (2003). Human Lower Limb Muscles: an Evaluation of Weight and Fiber Size. Okajimas Folia Anatomica Japonica, 80(2.3), 47–56. http://doi.org/10.2535/ofaj.80.47
- Amy H Amabile, J. H. B. S. D. R. (2017). Atrophy of gluteus maximus among women with a history of chronic low back pain, 1–12. http://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0177008
Buckthorpe, M., Stride, M., Villa International journal of, Della, F., 2019. (2019). Assessing and treating gluteus maximus weakness–a clinical commentary. The International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy. http://doi.org/10.26603/ijspt20190655