When you sit down a lot, (or don't use your muscles often enough or effectively) the muscle fibers in your glutes lock up, they become hypertonic (tight). Your glutes, hamstrings and hip flexors are common areas for this to happen.
And when your muscles are hypertonic they don't actually work efficiently they become dysfunctional hence the term weak. So what happens when you try and use them in an exercise like a deadlift, squat or a lunge they just don't work very well. Sound familiar?
Our bodies are fantastic at adapting, so instead you begin to incorporate your quad muscles, hips and sometimes even your lower back. Which isn't great, as these muscles are usually over active and/or tight already for many women.
But (excuse the pun) it's not all bad news, I’m going to share with you the most effective ways to get your Glutes firing! And ensure they are working most efficiently when you're training.
Because if they're working efficiently, you're going to be able to strengthen, tighten and lift that booty so much sooner!
1. Be careful doing exercises like the stiff-legged dead lifts, back kicks and similar variations, if you have previously injured your back. The muscles of the lower back (spinal erectors) are highly involved in the performance of these movements and can receive excessive stress, especially when you use weights. If this is a concern, you should employ unweighted versions of these movements that safely stimulate the hamstrings and the glutes while simultaneously strengthening the muscles of the lower back.
2. To apply proper stress to your glutes, you must concentrate on contracting these muscles on every repetition. Women generally have difficulty understanding how to contract their glutes properly during exercise. If this is your concern, practice the movement without weights until it becomes second nature.
3. An excellent way to increase the muscle tone of the glutes is to supplement your training with butt squeezes (isotension). This technique is both effective and extremely convenient. You can perform them almost anywhere, including when you are on the couch watching television, in line at the supermarket or in bed asleep. Simply contract your glute muscles, hold the squeeze for as long as possible (aim for 30 seconds or more), then release. After you are comfortable with the technique, try to do them in sets, counting each squeeze as one repetition. Perform three sets of 15 reps several times a week, and youll soon have buns of steel.