Your butt is made up of three muscles: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. Collectively, your glutes play a major role in your body's overall stabilization, Nicholas Rizzo, exercise biologist and director of fitness research at RunRepeat,
tells LIVESTRONG.com. When your glutes are weak, your body is forced to distribute the load that should be on your glutes to other body parts.
For the strong butt you're after, try these six butt exercises during your next lower-body gym session.
1. Set up a sturdy box or bench so that it won't move when you rest your back on it. 2. Load a barbell with weight plates. Choose a weight that's challenging but won't compromise your form. 3. Sit on the floor with your upper back resting on the bench or box. Roll the barbell up to your hips.
1. With your knees bent and your feet planted firmly on the ground and close to your butt, drive your hips upward, squeezing your glutes and keeping your core engaged, until your hips are parallel to the ground. 2. Lower yourself back down until you are sitting on the floor and repeat.
1. Stand with your feet hip-distance apart. 2. With control, take a step forward with your right foot. Make sure your foot is entirely flat on the ground. Sink into the step until your left knee hovers just above the ground.
1. Use your legs and glutes to push out of the bottom of the lunge, bringing your left foot to meet your right foot. 2. Repeat, this time taking a step forward with your left foot.
1. At the same time, lift your legs, arms and chest off the floor. Only your stomach and hips should be in contact with the floor. 2. Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement before lowering back to the floor. Repeat.
1. Stand with your feet hip-distance apart and a mini resistance band looped just above your ankles. 2. Step your right leg to the right, then follow it with your left leg, always keeping tension in the band. 3. Continue to shuffle to the side for 10 steps, then repeat in the other direction.
If you're just starting an exercise program, one of the best things you can do is commit to an activity that you like to do, and one that's also compatible with your schedule and lifestyle.
1. Start on all fours in tabletop position. 2. Using your glutes, lift your right heel toward the ceiling. Keep your knee bent and don't arch your back. 3. Slowly lower your right knee back to the floor and repeat on the left side.
1. Lie on your back with your left leg straight and your right leg bent with your right foot flat on the floor. 2. Push your hips up using your right leg only and squeeze tightly at the top before lowering yourself back down. 3. Switch sides and repeat.
The six exercises above can come together for a well-rounded (pun totally intended) glute-and-leg day at the gym
Best 6 Exercises for Butt Workout Men and Women