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Hip Thrust Exercises at Home or in Gym Settings will Get You the Peachy Butt.

Updated: Mar 16, 2023

Improve your posture, agility, and coordination while building an amazing peachy booty and staying fit and healthy!


Hip thrusts are one of the best exercises for toning your glutes (also known as the booty muscles). The good news is that it can be done either at home or at the gym. So, as long as you are consistent and persevere... you will get that Peacny Bum!


Regardless of the setting, this exercise involves thrusting your hips up toward the ceiling while keeping your feet on the ground and your back straight. It targets the gluteal muscles, which can help create a more toned and defined appearance in this area.



Hip thrusts can be done with just your body weight, or you can add weights or resistance bands to increase the challenge and maximize the benefits of the glute workout.


If you choose to do hip thrusts at home, you can use a chair, bench, or even the edge of your couch as a prop to support your upper back while performing the exercise. At the gym, you can use a specialized hip thrust machine, or use a barbell and weight plates to add resistance to the exercise.


Whether you're looking to build strength, improve your overall fitness, or simply tone your glutes, hip thrusts are irreplaceable addition to your workout routine.



The Best Glute Exercise to Build an Upper Butt


This exercise directly targets the gluteus maximus, which is the largest muscle in your glutes, as well as the upper portion of the gluteus medius. It puts your body in a certain position, where your glutes have no place to escape the work they need to do in order for you to complete the exercise.


Therefore, you put your booty through a lot of work by hip thrusting and therefore increase the chances of getting the peachy butt everyone raves about.



Hip Thrust Principles and Benefits


So what are the core principles and actual benefits of hip thrusts?


As said above, hip thrusts are an exercise that targets the gluteal muscles, commonly known as the glutes or buttocks. This exercise involves lying on your back with your feet flat on the ground, your knees bent and then raising your hips off the ground by squeezing your glutes.


The movement is typically done with a weight, such as a barbell, resting across the hips for added resistance. Hip thrusts are popular among athletes and fitness enthusiasts who want to strengthen and tone their glutes for improved athletic performance or aesthetic purposes.


Good News - Virtually anybody can perform hip thrusts. You can add load with a variety of tools (barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, bands, and other gym equipment).



Why is Hip Thrust Exercise so Good for Your Glutes?


Bret Contreras, Ph.D., whom many trainers consider to be the world’s foremost expert on glute training says the following about the importance of hip thrusts and glute building: "A strong, powerful gluteus maximus is often what separates the elite athlete from the average athlete."


In other words, when you develop your glutes, you will most likely stand out from the crowd with your exceptional look.


In addition to that, medical science has shown that strong glutes, or the muscles in your buttocks, provide a range of medical benefits for your overall health and well-being. The most prominent, key medical benefits of having strong glutes include...



- Improved posture

Strong glutes help to support your lower back, pelvis, and hips, which can improve your overall posture and reduce your risk of back pain.


- Reduced risk of injury

The glutes play a key role in stabilizing the hips and knees during physical activities like running, jumping, and lifting. Strong glutes can help to reduce your risk of injury by improving your body's ability to absorb shock and maintain proper alignment.


- Better balance and stability

Strong glutes can help to improve your balance and stability, which is especially important as you age. This can reduce your risk of falls and other accidents.


- Enhanced athletic performance

Strong glutes are essential for many physical activities, from running and jumping to squatting and lifting. Improving your glute strength can enhance your athletic performance and help you excel in your chosen sport or activity.


- Lower risk of chronic diseases

Research has shown that having strong glutes can lower your risk of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. This is because the glutes are one of the largest muscle groups in the body, and they play a key role in regulating metabolism and blood sugar levels.


Overall, building and maintaining strong glutes can provide a range of medical benefits for your overall health and well-being. Incorporating exercises that target the glutes into your fitness routine can help you achieve these benefits and enjoy a healthier, more active lifestyle.


So, let's take a look at a basic setup of how to do hip thrusts correctly.



Basic Setup and how to do Hip Thrusts Correctly:


a) Hip Thrust Form


To perform a hip thrust, you will need a sturdy bench or box, and a weight such as a barbell (loaded with plates or without, depending on your level of strength) or a dumbbell. Sit on the ground in front of the bench with your upper back resting against it, and your feet flat on the ground with your knees bent.


Place the weight across your hips, and drive your hips up towards the ceiling by squeezing your glutes. Pause at the top, then lower your hips back down to the starting position.


To better target the upper portion of your glutes specifically, you can adjust the position of your feet. Placing your feet closer together, with your toes pointed slightly outward, will emphasize the upper glutes. You can also add a resistance band above your knees to further activate your glutes.


b) Weighted Hip Thrusts vs. Hip Thrusts Without Weights


Weighted hip thrusts and hip thrusts without weights are both effective exercises for targeting and strengthening the glutes, but there are some differences between the two.


Hip thrusts without weights are a bodyweight exercise that can be done anywhere including your home, and they are a good starting point for beginners who are just starting to build glute strength.


These can be done with just body weight, or with the addition of resistance bands for added resistance.


This exercise is a good building block to more advanced hip thrust exercises, as it can help improve your mind-muscle connection with your glutes, and can help you get comfortable with the movement pattern before adding weight.


Weighted hip thrusts, on the other hand, involve adding external resistance, such as a barbell, dumbbell, or weight plate, to increase the difficulty of the exercise. This added weight can help you to progressively overload the glutes, and can lead to greater muscle hypertrophy and strength gains over time.


The weighted hip thrusts are generally more challenging than hip thrusts without weights and are better suited for intermediate or advanced lifters who are looking to take their glute training to the next level.



Both exercises are effective for building a strong and shapely butt, and it's important to choose the variation that is appropriate for your fitness level and goals. For beginners or those new to glute training, starting with bodyweight hip thrusts and then progressing to weighted hip thrusts can be a great way to build strength and avoid injury.


Ultimately, the best exercise for you will depend on your individual needs and fitness level, so it's important to work with a qualified trainer or coach to develop a training program that is tailored to your goals and abilities.



Doing Hip Thrust Exercises at the Gym


At the gym, you have the luxury of access to the proper hip thrust equipment. Many gyms, like ours, carry specific hip-thrusting equipment such as Bret Contreras's BC Hip Thruster or Booty Builder by BootyBuilder.com, at Fitnello we have both machines.



Having said that, here's our recommendation on how to do hip thrusts at the gym:


Find a hip thruster or a sturdy bench or box that is at the appropriate height. Ideally, the bench should be positioned so that your upper back rests against it, and your feet are flat on the ground with your knees bent.


Choose a weight that is appropriate for your fitness level and goals. This can be a barbell, dumbbell, or weight plate, and should be positioned across your hips during the exercise.


Position yourself on the bench so that your upper back is resting against it, and your feet are flat on the ground with your knees bent. The weight should be resting across your hips.


Engage your glutes and core, and drive your hips up toward the ceiling by squeezing your glutes. Pause at the top of the movement, then slowly lower your hips back down to the starting position.


Aim for 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps, and rest for 60-90 seconds between sets. Be sure to use proper form and avoid arching your back or overextending your hips...


It's important to start with a weight that is appropriate for your fitness level and gradually increase the weight over time as you become stronger.



Hip Thrust Exercises at Home


​​Do you land on this page scrolling through social media or "googled" to find the best ways to perform a Hip Thrust or any other exercises without any equipment? We have got you covered!


Below are alternate options for incorporating this great glute movement exercise into your at-home workout, even if you have no equipment or access to barbells and weights.



So, What If you Have No Equipment?


Like any major lift, setting up your hip thrust is crucial for proper execution and form. Here are some basic guidelines and tips:

  • Activate your glutes before you begin hip thrust sets

  • The optimal height of the bench/surface is 12-16 inches (depending on height and anatomy)

  • Align the bottom of your shoulder blades with the edge of your surface (couch, risers, stairs, chair)

  • Position the bar or weight just above your pubic bone in the lower abdominal area. You can use a pad to add some cushion

  • Always Push through your entire foot, with the main emphasis on your heels

  • Move from your sternum down and keep your ribs from flaring upwards

  • Keep your head forward and chin down. Focus your eyes forward

  • Your shins should be vertical at the top of the movement

  • You want a full hip extension at the top. Do this by posteriorly tucking your pelvis and squeezing your glutes

If you don’t have access to anything that can load the movement, there are still ways to challenge yourself. Here are a few ways to modify the movement without weight that will still add plenty of intensity.

  • Increase your reps

  • Push all sets until failure

  • Perform reps with a 60-90 second pause

  • Perform reps with slow eccentrics (descend when going back down slower, than when you trusted your hips up/forward)

  • Switch your foot placement and stance. (change between Split Stance; B Stance; Narrow Stance; Single Leg, etc)



Different Ways to Load the Hip Thrust at Home


There are several ways to load hip thrusting exercises at home, even if you don't have access to gym equipment.


Bodyweight hip thrusts:

This is the simplest way to do the hip thrust at home, and it involves using only your body weight for resistance. Lie on your back with your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent, then lift your hips up towards the ceiling by squeezing your glutes. Pause at the top of the movement, then lower your hips back down to the starting position.


Resistance bands:

Adding a resistance band around your thighs can increase the difficulty of the hip thrust and provide additional resistance. Position the band around your thighs just above your knees, then perform the hip thrust as usual.


Weighted backpacks:

If you have a backpack at home, you can use it to add weight to your hip thrusts. Fill the backpack with books or other heavy objects, then wear it on your hips during the exercise.


Dumbbells or kettlebells:

If you have access to dumbbells or kettlebells at home, you can hold them on your hips to add weight to the exercise. Start with a light weight and gradually increase the weight over time.


Sandbags:

Sandbags are versatile pieces of home gym equipment that can be used to load the hip thrust. Position the sandbag across your hips during the exercise, and adjust the weight by adding or removing sand as needed.


And, of course, if you have some fitness equipment at home you should always try to use:

  • Dumbbells

  • Kettlebells

  • Mini Bands

  • Resistance bands

You can add any of these to your variations to ensure that you are achieving a progressive overload as you build up your strength.



Use Your Couch. It's Not Just for Watching TV.


When doing hip thrusts at home, not everyone has access to a bench or hip thrust machine like the one we use at Fitnello Fitness. So before we go into ways to optimize hip thrusts with minimal equipment, we will highlight different options for you if you don’t have a bench at home.


A couch provides a good height and a good amount of padding to perform a hip thrust. You can start with your back against the couch. Place the bottom of your shoulder blades at the edge. Feet on the floor.


Press your knees out and push your feet into the floor. Drive through your glutes and lift your hips towards the ceiling. Hinge your hips back towards the floor. Using weight is always a good option if you have it available, you may use any weights you have around the house.

You can also use a Sitting Bench, but don’t forget to through a pillow to create soft padding, so, you wouldn’t hurt your back.



Try Glute Bridges


Although equally suited for the gym and home-performed hip thrusts, the Glute bridges are a common exercise that targets the muscles in your glutes, as well as your hamstrings and lower back.


To perform a glute bridge, you start by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.


Then, you lift your hips up towards the ceiling, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings as you do so. Hold at the top for a few seconds, then lower back down to the starting position.


You can increase the intensity of the exercise by holding a weight or resistance band across your hips, or by lifting one leg off the ground while you bridge up with the other.


Glute bridges are a great way to build strength and stability in your lower body at home without any fitness equipment or weights.



Use the Wall


- Lay down on the floor close to a wall.

- Place your feet about hip-width apart on the wall.

- Press your feet against the wall and drive through your hips and glutes.

- Raising your hips up off the ground and towards the ceiling.

- Keep your ribs interlaced and squeeze your glutes up at the top.

- Come back to the ground and repeat.



Common Mistake When Performing Hip Thrust Exercises


One of the most common mistakes we see people make with the hip thrust is not intentionally thinking about pressing their entire feet into the ground to get into full hip extension.


As we always say to our clients - you should push evenly through your feet throughout the range of motion with the maximum pressure put on the heel of your foot... this technique is going to help you get more glute activation from the movement.


As you get stronger and want to make the hip thrust more challenging, we suggest elevating your feet on a small stepping stool or some weight plates so that your hips have a greater range of motion to go through. We will cover this subject in more depth in the following Advanced hip thrust techniques tutorial.


Another common mistake we often catch is when girls are trying to do heavy weighted hip thrusts, often sacrificing the proper form technique by not being physically prepared for the weight they've put on.


Remember, this exercise is not about weight (although it becomes increasingly more important as you get stronger). We recommend you always put more emphasis on completing your hip thrust set in a proper form, by squeezing your glutes at the top of your hip thrust.


This will surely provide more benefit to building those peachy glutes faster, rather than just struggling with the heavyweight and not being able to complete your hip thrusting set.



Complimentary Exercises That Amplify Hip Thrusts


In addition to hip thrusts, exercises like squats, lunges, stepping lunges and step-ups can also help to build and shape your glutes. It's important to vary and complement your exercises and challenge your glutes with different types of movements for optimal growth and development.



What Else Do You Need To Know About Hip Thrust Exercises (FAQs):


What's Glute Activation and Do I Need To Warm Up Before Doing The Hip Thrust Exercise?


- Yes, you most definitely need to warm up and activate your glutes. This will give you a better muscle pump and it will make your hip thrusts more effective!


Hip Thrust With Resistance Band


- Resistance ban is the least expensive and the most commonly available fitness equipment you can probably find to perform your hip thrusts with. It is also a great tool that activates your glutes and other muscles in your legs.


Dumbbell Hip Thrust


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Barbell Hip Thrust


Single Leg Hip Thrust


Single Leg Dumbbell Hip Thrust


What Is The Time Needed To Do Hip Thrust Exercises?




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