6 Exercises To Get a Bigger Butt

Start sculpting your bottom using these top moves.

If you're in search of a derrière that rivals Jennifer Lopez's, you might have to manage your expectations a bit—as butt size and shape are largely determined by genetics. Still, that doesn't mean you can't work toward the best—and biggest—your own special butt can be.

And while how your backside looks in jeans might be your number one reason for doing more squats at the gym, it shouldn't be your only motivation—a stronger butt has some serious health perks, as well, said Quianna Camper, CPT, a trainer with RSP Nutrition. "Stronger glute muscles can help reduce the risk of injury, boost your metabolism, improve your athletic performance, and give the appearance of a lifted, rounder bum," said Camper.

Also important: Butt-sculpting moves don't just result in glute gains. "You can do exercises that primarily target the glute muscles," said Camper. "But the movements you should do for stronger glutes are multi-joint, multi-muscle movements that are also going to strengthen your whole body." That's because all the muscles in the body work together—which means a more toned butt can mean gains for your entire body, too.

If you're convinced that you need to start working your glutes more, how do you do it? Here, Camper shared six key exercises to get a bigger butt and stronger glutes.

1. Glute Bridge


How to do it: Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the ground, hip-width apart. Extend your arms down by your sides with your palms on the floor. Pressing your feet into the floor and keeping shoulder blades rooted to the ground, lift your hips into the air, until your body creates a straight line from your knees to shoulders. Squeeze your glutes at the top and hold for one to three seconds, then return to the ground. That's one rep. Complete three sets of 10 to 12 reps total.

To add weight, rest a barbell straight against your pelvis. Hold the bar into position with a shoulder-width grip to prevent it from rolling down your body. Then, complete the movement as described above.

2. Jump Squats


How to do it: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Breath in, engage your core and keep your chest up as you drop into a squat. Continue lowering your butt until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Exhale and drive back up through your heels to jump up, using your arms as necessary. Land with bent knees to absorb the impact. That's one rep. Do three sets of 12 to 20 reps.

3. Barbell Front Squat


How to do it: Prop an empty barbell into the squat rack so that when you're facing it, the bar hits you at chest height. Step towards the bar, and place your fingertips under the bar so that they're just outside of your shoulders. Drive your elbows up so that they're parallel to the ground and lift the barbell out of the rack, stepping back. Get into a squat position by adjusting your feet so that they're hip-width apart and your toes are pointed out slightly.

Breathe in, engage your core by drawing your bellybutton in toward your spine, and then shift the hips back and bend your knees like you're sitting back. Actively press your knees out and elbows up (to keep your chest raised up) as you lower your body. Continue lowering until your hips are lower than your knees. Breathe out and push through your midfoot and heels to return to the starting position, squeezing your glutes as you do so. That's one rep. Aim for four sets of 8 to 10 reps, resting two minutes between sets.

4. Dumbbell Walking Lunge


How to do it: Start by holding two dumbbells, one in each hand, with arms straight and shoulders back and down. Engage your core and step forward with your right leg, lowering the hips until your right leg is bent at a 90-degree angle and the left knee grazes the floor. Drawing your shoulders back away from your ears, press your right heel into the ground and push off with your left foot to return to the starting position. That's one rep. Repeat with your left leg. Aim for four sets of 12 reps.

5. Hip Thrust


How to do it: Start seated with a barbell and the back of your shoulder-blades resting against a bench or box. Make sure your feet are flat and slightly narrower than hip-width. Rest your arms on the bench for stability and root your feet into the ground, then lift your hips up until your trunk is parallel with the floor. Squeeze your glutes before returning to the starting position. That's one rep. Aim for three sets of 8 to 10 reps.

Once you have the movement pattern down, add weight by laying a barbell across your hip crease. Load the barbell so that you can do at least five "clean" reps in a row.

6. Good Morning

good-morning exercise glutes back barbell woman health wellbeing

How to do it: Stand with feet hip-distance apart and a barbell resting on your back with your hands holding it just outside of your shoulder blades. With elbows pointing towards the ground, use your hands to pull the bar down and against your back. Inhale and engage your core, then hinge at the hips by bending at the waist and pressing your glutes back. Continue pushing your hips back until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings and your torso is parallel to the ground. Exhale as you push your hips forward and return to start, squeezing glutes at the top. That's one rep. Repeat for three sets of 10 to 12 reps.

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