In my previous post, I spoke about my fascination and adoration of the Glutes.When this muscle group is neglected, that makes me sad. I cannot stipulate the importance of having a strong, well functioning booty enough. So you’re probably thinking, well how do I know if my glutes are at an adequate level of strength? Glute weakness is extremely common, even amongst people that are regular gym-goers, so I can probably safely say that most of you could improve in this area. I can say myself that I have suffered from having inhibited Glutes, and it is a constant working process for me.
- Visual inspection – Your bottom simply looks depressed. It may be any of the following; droopy, dimply, soft, saggy, lacking definition, flat, or wobbly. The solution – your butt needs some TLC to give it a boost!
- lower back/knee pain – As discussed in my previous article, weakness in the Glutes could possibly be the cause of pain experienced in the lower back, knees, ankles, and front of the hip.
- Knees caving inwards – When you are next doing a lower body movement, such a squat, lunge, or leg press, take a note of what your knees are doing, especially at the bottom of the movement when you begin to push upwards. Ideally, your knees, ankles and toes should all be in line with eachother, so if you find that your knees move towards eachother, you have trouble keeping the knees and ankles, and toes tracking in line, and you roll inwards, it could be a sign that your Glutes are on holiday.
- Assessment methods – A method we use as trainers is the prone leg raise. lying on your stomach, have someone firmly dig one finger into the hamstring muscle, and one in the gluteal muscle, one side at a time. Keeping the leg straight, raise the leg off the ground. Observe which muscle contracts first, then release that leg down to the ground, relax completely, then repeat up to 5 times. Ideally we want the Glute muscle turning on before the hamstring. If this isn’t happening, and you can feel the hamstring muscle contracting first, then you need to learn how to switch those Glute babies on.
So if you notice any or all of the above are applicable to you, please do yourself the courtesy of learning how to strengthen these all-important muscles, the Glutes. Check out (below) the kind of transformation you can achieve when you start to focus on building your butt. You can begin this by joining Kim’s 10 week small-group workshop where you will learn the art of Glute activation and strengthening, with the next intake starting from 21st of July, 2014.
In my next post, I’ll be covering the reasons why we develop lazy, weak and inhibited Glutes in the first place.
Kim is a Personal Trainer at NAFC whose areas of expertise & interest include; strength training, (with an emphasis on the lower body and Glutes), core, Kettlebell, running, & triathlon training.
Kim is running a series of workshops that teach you technical & practical skills to build stronger Glutes & core. Enquire today.