Resistance exercises for a firm butt
Resistance bands are a priceless tool to have in your toning arsenal. For starters, they’re inexpensive and easy to take on the road. Even better: “They’re joint-friendly and provide a more functional movement in comparison to free weights.
You can get these bands in different forms, too. Loop resistance bands — the kind that forms a circle, rather than one long strip — around your thighs or ankles during exercise. This makes them especially effective for pinpointing the muscles that make up your backside.
They directly target your glutes, in particular your medial glute, which is a muscle that often refuses to fire for the majority of people. When it doesn’t activate, the muscles around it overcompensate and start doing all the work.” That can lead to imbalances and injuries.
The bands also add ascending resistance to your weight room routine, meaning the exercises get tougher as you move through the full range of motion. That doesn’t happen with free weights, which give a constant resistance throughout the move. More intensity, more stability — aka efficiency at its best.
Take on these 10 band exercises to fire up your glutes, and the rest of your lower body! We promise you’ll love the booty-toning benefits, and the strength upsides, too.
10 Best Firm Butt Exercises
- Banded Clam Shell
Lie on your left side with your hips, knees, and ankles stacked on top of each other. Bend your knees to 90 degrees and wrap the band around your thighs just above your knees.
Keeping your feet together, lift your right knee open, then slowly lower it back to meet your left.
Focus on keeping your core engaged and your back straight as you do these moves. Try not to lean forward or tip back. Do all of the reps on one side, then switch to the other side.
- Lateral Band Walk
Place the band around your ankles. Stand in a quarter squat position (a shallow squat), with your feet about hip-width apart, and your hands at your chest or on your hips.
Take a step to the right with your right foot, so that your feet are wider than hip-width. Follow with your left foot so that your feet are hip-width apart again. Take three steps to the right, and then three back to the left. That’s 1 rep. Try to keep your weight in the centre, keep your core engaged, and keep constant tension in the band.
- Curtsy Lunge
A favourite among runners, this move is a great bang-for-your-buck exercise. It works all parts of your glutes, hip abductors and core. Try holding a kettlebell in front of your chest or two dumbbells at your sides when you’re ready to up the intensity.
Stand with feet hip-width apart, a band around thighs. Step your left foot behind you and to the right, lowering until your right thigh is parallel to the floor. Return to standing. Do 10 reps, then repeat on the opposite side.
- Standing Glute Kickback
Loop a mini band around your ankles and stand with your feet hip-width apart and your core engaged.
With your hands at your chest or on your hips, shift all your weight into your left leg and place your right toes on the floor about an inch diagonally behind your left heel, so there is tension in the band. Squeeze your core and tuck your pelvis under as you kick your right leg back about 6 inches. Keep your knee straight.
Return your right foot to tap the floor, keeping tension in the band, for 1 rep. Complete all your reps, then repeat on the other side.
If you feel your lower back arching when you kick, make the movement smaller. Try not to put any weight in the leg that’s kicking as it comes back down to the ground.
Stand on the resistance band with feet hip-width apart, holding band behind the back of your arms. Slowly lower into a seated position, pushing your glutes behind you and putting the weight into your heels.
Now just as slowly, begin to return to starting position making sure to squeeze your buns as you come up. Keep your abdominals tight throughout the move and your spine long; do not bend forward.
- Kneeling Leg Lift
Start kneeling with the band wrapped around both legs just above the knees. Place your left hand on the ground while extending your right leg in a supported side plank.
This is your starting position. Lift your right (top) leg up so that your foot comes off the ground. Then lower it back to start allowing your toes to only tap the floor.
That’s 1 rep, do 10 then repeat on the opposite side.
- Plank Jack
Wrap the band around your ankles, then get into a high plank position. In your high plank, your wrists should be under your shoulders, your hips in line with your spine, your legs extended straight behind you, and your core engaged.
From this position, maintaining an engaged core, jump your feet wide apart, then jump them back together to return to your starting position. Then immediately jump them wide again.
Continue to move as quickly as you can, while focusing on keeping your core engaged and your hips level throughout.
- Hip Bridge With Alternating Leg Extension
Loop a mini-band just above your knees around both your thighs. Lie on your back with your hands at your sides, knees bent, and feet flat on floor hip-width apart. Squeeze your glutes and core and lift your hips a few inches off the floor. Extend your right leg until it’s straight, keeping your knees in line with one another.
Return your right leg to your starting position. Gently lower your hips to the floor. Lift your hips again. This time, extend your left leg until it’s straight. Return your left leg to starting position and gently lower your hips back down to the floor. That’s 1 rep. Continue, alternating sides, to complete all your reps.
Focus on touching your heels on the floor each time, not your toes.
- Push-Up To Plank Jack
Wrap the band around your ankles then move into a high plank position.
Bend your elbows and lower your torso to the floor to do one push-up.
Push your through palms to straighten your arms and return to a high plank position.
Now jump your legs out to the sides and back in again while keeping your hips stable and facing the ground.
- Monster Walks
Loop the resistance band around your ankles. Crouch into a squat position, keeping your back upright.
Clasping your hands together, walk forward one foot at a time in a strong and stable manner.
If you’re a beginner, a 3-5 minute mini band workout 5 days a week. The better you get, the more you can do. If you consider yourself intermediate to advanced, try including mini band exercises in your normal workout plan 3-5 days per week to help with pre-activation or to target your glutes more effectively.
Just do not go all Debbie Downer on yourself, glute band exercises alone won’t shave fat from all-over – you can’t out-train an unbalanced diet with an elastic band.
However, team it with a nutritious meal plan that provides a safe caloric deficit and up your day-to-day activity level (don’t underestimate the fat-burning ability of walking) and you’re well on track to lose fat and get that butt you always wanted.