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Workouts for bootylicious behinds!

A healthy and perfectly shaped behind can be your best asset - and not just from cosmetic point of view!

Most of the workouts concentrate on working out the whole body at a time. But who doesn’t want to own perfectly shaped buttocks? If you are one such aspirant read on!!

Not only in the “it looks good” point of view, having strong firm glutes (a.k.a buttocks) is important for the prime reason that they are the most important locomotive muscles that one has to focus on while exercising.

So how do you know if your glutes are strong enough? Perform the following tests:

Squat Test

Perform Body weight squat(deep knee bend) and assess the alignment of your knees with your hips and ankles. If your knees collapse inwards, your glutes are weak.

Reverse Step-Up Test

Stand on a chair or bench and slowly lower one foot to the ground as if performing a reverse Step-Up. Attempt to lower yourself in control until your foot touches the ground. If you suddenly lose control and fall too quickly (usually around the halfway point), your glutes are weak.

So lets see how to get those firm booties, in the following section you will find two categories of workouts – one that you can do at the convenience of your home and the other that requires weights and equipments.

First category : On floor butt workouts:

  1. Squats : Stand with feet parallel and shoulder-width apart. Slowly lower your hips, making sure not to let your knees go past your toes. A great variation for beginners, is ball squats: Standing with your back to a wall, put an exercise ball between your low back and the wall, then squat, keeping your feet out in front on you.

  2. Standing lungesBeginning with your feet parallel and hip-distance apart, take one giant step forward. Slowly lower your body, bending both knees. Bend your knees no farther than 90 degrees, keeping your front knee aligned over your front ankle. Then repeat with the other leg in front. A more advanced version is stepping lunges, in which you move forward after each lunge, alternating legs. 

    Warning: This form of exercise may put undue pressure on the knee joint and low backs.

  3. Prone leg lifts over a ball: Lie stomach-down on an exercise ball, with hands on the floor. By tightening your glute muscles, lift one of your legs slightly off the floor, keeping the leg straight. Then alternate sides. As you get more fit, try lifting both legs simultaneously -- but only if you can do it without straining your back.

  1. Prone hip lift over a ballLying stomach-down over an exercise ball, rest your forearms on the floor and stabilize the ball under your hips and tops of your thighs. Using the arms and trunk muscles as support, bend your knees to 90 degrees, and put your feet together. Squeezing your glutes, slowly move your thighbones slightly away from the ball, being careful not to use the low back muscles. This is a very small move -- you should raise your legs no more than about 2 inches off the ball.

  1. BridgeLie on your back with knees bent, feet on the floor and hip-width apart. Slowly peel your spine off the floor from the bottom, one vertebra at a time, tightening the glutes and hamstrings (backs of the thighs) until you've created a diagonal line from your shoulders to your knees. Return to the floor slowly, one vertebra at a time.

Second Category: Machines, Weights and/or equipment workouts:

  1. Step Ups : Step ups target your quadriceps as well as your backside and have the added benefit of being rather cardiovascular. Trust me stepping up and down off of a bench or elevated platform while holding weights will definitely get your heart rate going.

  2. Lunges : Those people you see walking and dropping down with two weights in their hands all the way across the gym are doing lunges. When done correctly and attention is give to making it a strict movement lunges will give great shape to your thighs and butt.

  3. Deadlifts : Since form is so key it's best to start out with a lighter weight so that you can focus on technique first and then move on to heavier weights when you've got it down.

  4. Hamstring Curls : Most gyms will usually have both a lying and seated version of this machine. Yes it's specifically for your hamstrings but your butt will definitely be involved in curling that weight up.

  5. Leg Press : The leg press is another great machine that can help you zero in on and really make your butt muscles work hard. Remember to press with your heels and not your toes while doing the movement.

  6. Incline Cardio : Walking or running on an incline is not only more difficult and burns more calories it also shifts what muscles get worked. Lucky for our purposes it shifts more responsibility to your glutes.

Just like any muscle, your glutes will also need time to recover so don't over-do the exercises – they won't give you bubble butts in a day. Also, any exercise is incomplete without a healthy lifestyle. So, get working and get those curves to make people drooooooooool! 

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