"I said my head hurts, my bras too tight my BOOTIE shakes from the left to the right...from the leftttt to the rightttt, from the lefttttt to the righttttt" << a song my netball team used to sing when we scored a goal!!
With these top tips you can rest assured that your bootie is NOT going to be doing any unnecessary shaking "from the left to the right"...unless you are purposefully doing some good old twerking!!!
Ok jokes aside and let's get down to business... firm, toned, peachy bum business!!!
Small, skinny, flat, pancake bottoms are a thing of the past. Nowdays women are working hard to transform their bottoms into pert little PEACHES! Not only does a firm bottom look awesome in a pair of jeans and in your bikini on the beach but it is also SUPER DUPER important for preventing lower back pain.
Here at ENERGY we have worked with a lot of yummy mummys and one thing we ALWAYS find is that most of you awesome ladies suffer from lower back pain...normally around your sacroiliac joint (SI). Lower back pain post pregnancy can be linked to a number of different things such as postural changes during pregancy to compensate for the baby bump. << we will come back to this in more detail in a future blog post.
Most ladies and men with lower back pain are lead to believe that they are in pain due to weak core muscles, while this isn't compleley wrong it also isnt compleyely correct. Reserach has found that people with weak core muscles are NO more likely to suffer from lower back pain than people with stronger core muscles. Research has also found that strengthening the core muscle to 'stabalize' the lower back is no more effective than exercising in general.
HOWEVER what has been found is that strengthening your GLUTES (bum muslces) does provide stabilization for the lower back, the SI joint in particular. By strengthening your glutes you will create more protection for your lower back thus prevening pain and injury.
Bret Contreras (2013) AKA the glute guy explains that "When muscles contract, they create compressive force, which also creates joint force. This joint force increases stability, which is especially important in the SI joint." Therefore when your glutes contract they create almost a clamp around the SI joint thus keeping it in place while you move (such as picking your little ones up and down, up and down, up and down, UP AND DOWN).
Bret Contreras believes these 3 exercises to be AWESOME for building those sexy buns of steel:
Hip thrusts kick ass for upper and lower glutes
Back extensions kick ass for upper and lower glutes
Pendulum quadruped hip extensions kick ass for upper and lower glutes
Keep reading to find ENERGY'S TOP TIPS for training your glutes!!!
ENERGY'S TOP TIPS
1. GLUTE ACTIVATION...
Wake up your bum muscles. This takes MUSCLE MIND CONECTION. My favourite exercise for waking up my glutes is a GLUTE BRIDGE. Lay on your back with your feet shoulder width apart and your knees bent. Have your hands by your side, tense your bottom and thrust your hips into the air (like you just don't care...sorry I couldn't resist). Push your heels into the floor and hold the top position (see picture B) for 6 seconds, slowly lower back down towards the floor (keeping tension in your glutes and legs at all times), rest for 1 second at the bottom and then repeat again by thrusting your hips high. Perform 4 sets of 10 repetitions. IMPORTANT: make sure you keep your back in alignment and SQUEEZE those glutes.
2.My 3 Fav Glute Exercises...
1- Barbell glute bridges: Shoot for 4 sets of 8-10 repetitions with a 4-6 secod SQUEEZE at the top. YOUTUBE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rTqhhHfooxg2- Romanian deadlifts.
- Start by practicing the bodyweight version of this exercise, as described in tip number ONE!
- Once you learn how to activate your glutes and get that 'muscle mind connection' then grab a barbell and try the exercise with some weight.
- Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet hip width apart.
- Tense yoru glutes, legs and abdomen.
- Thurst your hips into the air and SQUEEZE your glutes for 4-6 seconds
- Slowly lower back down towards the floor, BUT make sure you keep tension in your glutes, legs and core.
- Rest for 1 second at the bottom before repeating.
- MAKE SURE you keep a neutral (straight) spine throughout the movement.
- DO NOT go too heavy too quickly...each week expect to increase the weight by approx 2.5kg.
2- Romanaian Deadlifts: This one takes a little while to learn, make sure you have good form before you start uding heavy weights. Start with a weight you are comfortable with and aim for 3sets of 10-15 reps once you have nailed your form you can increase teh weight and aim for 4sets of 8-10 reps. YOUTUBE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JCXUYuzwNrM
- Start by practicing the hip hinge exercise as a body weight exercise
- Progress by using a light bar/broom stick/ pipe, hold the bar just outside of your hips, feet shoulder width apart (narrower stance than a squat). Squeeze your shoulder blades together and keep tension in your upper back at all times.
- Neutral knees, not locked out and straight and not a full bend...very slight bend. I use teh coaching phrase "SOFT KNEES" with my clients.
- Keep the bar touching your legs at ALL TIMES.
- Keep your back straight AT ALL TIMES, you will have a nautrual curve in the lower spine, coaching cue for ladies: BOOBS OUT, BUM OUT
- Start rolling the bar down your legs and push your bottom out behind you (hip hinge), your knees should remain in the 'soft knee' position and your shins should remain verticle at all times.
- You should start to feel a stretch in your hamstrings and your bottom.
- STOP the hinge movement when your hips stop moving backwards, for most people this is just below the knees.
- Squeeze your glutes and hamstrings, keep the tension in your upper back and stand up by thrusting your hips forwards (keeping the bar touching your legs at all times). Once back to teh standing position SQUEEZE your glutes and begin the movement again.
- Once you have mastered the exercise using a pipe progress onto using a barbell or dumbbells.
3- Ankle weight donkey kicks. I LOVE this exercise, I love the bump and burn and my clients have a secret love hate relationship with these bad boys. Start bt practicing the exercise without ankle weights, start on all 4's (hands and knees) and then you can progress onto yoru elbows if you feel comfortable and are able to maintain a neurtral spine. Once you have mastered teh bodyweight version then grab yourself some ankle weights and build those BUNS!!!
- The youtue video isn't really the best example ( I will video myself doing them for you), the ladyin teh video arches her back a little... DO NOT DO THIS!!! Make sure you tense your glutes, core and back... you will have a natuarl arch in your back but make sure you DO NOT have an excessive arch.
- I use 4kg ankle weights, you can buy them from amazon >>> HERE <<<
- Start on all 4's, tense your glutes, legs and core.
- FLEX YOUR FOOT- the opposite to pointing your toe like a ballerina.
- Kick your heel towards the sky and SQUEEZE your bottom, hold for a count of 2 and slowly lower back down MAINTAIN the tension at all times, rest for 0.5 seconds at the bottom and then repeat
- Body weight version: start with 3sets of 20reps each leg
- Ankle Weights: start with a light weight then build up, I like to do 3-4 sets of 20 reps each leg with my 4kg ankle weights to really get that pump and burn!!!
4. GLUTE focussed CARDIO: If you have cardio in our training program why not kill 2 birds with 1 stone by doing some GLUTE cardio.
- Hill walking (incline treadmill)
- Hill lunges SQUEEZE those bum cheeks (incline treadmill)
- Tyre flips: do as many as you can in 1 min for example. (bend your knees, squeeze your glutes and legs and drive your heels into the floor...imagine you are pushing the floor away)
- High step ups (use a high wall, bench, plyo box etc : step up onto both feet and stand up 'locking your hips out' SQUEEZE your bum before stepping down)
- Stair climbing: squeeze your glutes with each step
GUESS WHAT... not only will building strong, firm, toned BUNS OF STEEL boost your confidence on rge beach, make you look and feel amazeballs in your jeans, PREVENT/ REDUCE lower back pain... BUT it will also give the illusion of a smaller waist!!! For me this is a big one... I was born with a naturally atheletic build (I am pretty straight up and down) BUT by building some nice round high glutes and a strong back and toned shoulders I am able to give the illusion of a smaller waist!!!
WIN WIN WIN!!!
There you go FitNuts 4 TOPTIPS to get you started on building those sexy, firm, toned peachy bottoms!!!!
GO GET 'EM!!!! Make sure you take progress pictures and measurements to track the shape changes of your bootiful bum!!!
Any questions, comments and suggestions are always welcome... please do not hesitate to get in contact with Charlotte :)
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