A question I am frequently (okay, daily) asked is, “What is the best exercise I can do for my butt?” In my opinion, there is nothing better you can do for your butt than lunges. They target your glutes, hamstrings and quads, and can easily be modified for beginners to advanced exercisers.
If lunges are new for you, begin with a reverse lunge. Start with your feet together. Step back with your left leg. Bend both knees. The right shin should remain a straight line with the right ankle. The left knee should go straight down and almost touch the floor. Press through the right heel as you come up and bring feet back together. Now repeat with the other leg. Perform 12 repetitions per leg, and work up to 3 sets per workout. Feel free to hold on to something sturdy for support if you need to at first. Then, as you get stronger and more stable, you can do these lunges without the extra support. Try adding dumbbells at your side or a barbell across your shoulders for an increased challenge.
As you get stronger and want more of a challenge, you can progress to a walking lunge. These require more stability, strength and balance than reverse lunges. Start with your feet together. Place your hands on your hips or by your sides if you are holding dumbbells. Step forward with a large step and bend both knees. Your front shin should remain a straight line with your ankle. Your back knee should almost touch the floor. As you are pushing up and at the top of your lunge, lunge forward with the other leg, repeating the same movement. Continue with this sequence, alternating from one leg to the other until you have finished 12 reps per leg.
Some tips to keep in mind:
- Keep a straight back, do not arch!
- Keep your head and chest up.
- Never let the knee of your front leg go past your toes.
- Your back heel should raise off the floor as you descend, but your toe should stay on the floor.