Forget squats. If you want to grow your glutes, this 10-minute home workout is a must-try. I'm not a huge fan of glute exercises, so whether I'm reluctantly sticking them on to leg-day workouts as a quick finisher or using glute activation exercises to warm up, I have to take a breath and hype myself up.
I know, I teach glute exercises for a living. While it seems counterintuitive, every coach has their Achilles heel, and glute exercises (and glute workouts) are mine. When I do turn to them, I like to keep it short and sweet. That means an efficient and effective glute workout is what I choose to program or search for from others.
Enter, the Train With GAINSBYBRAINS "booty pump" 10-minute workout without squats. You can do this as a bodyweight glute workout or grab a dumbbell, kettlebell, or resistance band to add intensity (check out the best adjustable dumbbells and the best resistance bands here). Either way, expect to give your glutes a good pump with just 10 minutes and six moves. Now that's more like it.
The 10-minute glute workout forms part of a wider 24-day FIT challenge, but it’s highly effective as a standalone glute exercise and can be done regularly. If you need leg-day inspiration, why not try a 7-move kettlebell leg workout and add this as a finisher?
We recommend watching the video below for tips on perfecting your form and learning to do each exercise with proper core engagement to protect your lower back before you begin.
Watch the 10-minute “instant booty pump” glute workout
The home workout follows an EMOM (every minute on the minute) format, which means you’ll work for 45 seconds, then rest for 15 before moving to the next exercise on the minute. Some exercises work separately on each side of your body — a technique called unilateral training. According to research, unilateral training has been shown to strengthen underused muscles, improve balance and stability, and even indirectly stimulate muscles on the other side of the body — called cross-education.
You have three gluteal muscles — the gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, and gluteus maximus (the largest and strongest muscle). A quick and effective glutes workout will give all these muscles the attention they deserve, so expect to move in different planes of motion — lifting your legs forwards and sideways — to hit all your backside muscles with maximum intensity. For example, your gluteus medius is responsible for abducting your hip when you lift your leg sideways, and this workout uses specific hip abduction exercises to target the muscle.
I was as pumped as my glutes when I saw the “Frog” exercise crop up. It’s my favorite exercise and effectively targets the muscles in your posterior chain (the back of your body), like your lower back, glutes, and hamstrings. Speaking of Frog, the stretch variation is brilliant for hip flexor pain, and I recently tried this one move every day to reduce hip flexor pain using the Frog pose.
You don’t need to lift heavy weights or prioritize hip thrusts and squats in your glute workouts, although they’re brilliant for building muscle and strength. In fact, I did hip thrusts every day for a week, and I won’t be repeating the fitness challenge any time soon. So however you choose to exercise, variation is paramount.
For beginners, the workout features variations of glute bridges, and we discuss how to do glute bridges with proper form here. Other beginner muscle-building exercises include how to build your glutes without weights and are also worth a try.
Next: To build muscle all over, you should hit all major muscle groups like your upper body and lower body several times a week. If you want to mix it up, try the best dumbbell chest workouts, and we enjoy a bodyweight Pilates ab workout for abs and glutes.