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8 Hip Thrust Alternatives For All Fitness Levels

Image Source: antoniodiaz / Shutterstock


8 Hip Thrust Alternatives For All Fitness Levels

Image Source: antoniodiaz / Shutterstock

8 Hip Thrust Alternatives For All Fitness Levels

To achieve a more robust, curvier posterior, hip thrusts reign supreme as the go-to glute exercise. This particular move is exceptional at concentrating effort on the gluteus maximus, which primarily shapes your buttocks and hips.

The gluteus maximus isn’t just for show; it’s the most potent muscle in your body. Amping up its strength can lead to better posture, a boost in athletic performance, and joint stability according to a 2019 study published by the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy.

Implementing hip thrusts in your exercise regimen promises a toned, lifted rear and enhanced overall muscle strength. If you’re keen on diversifying your routine, there’s a whole array of hip thrust modifications you can incorporate to keep targeting the same muscle groups.

According to fitness expert Ash Wilking, CPT, who is also a certified trainer and strength coach for Tonal, “The glutes are often dubbed the ‘powerhouse of the core’. By integrating variations of the hip thrust into your workouts, you can boost the power in your lower body, improve hip mobility and firmness, fortify your core strength, and even alleviate pain in the lower back.”

Wilking presents eight inventive takes on the basic hip thrust that you can add to your leg day regime, ensuring a fiery glute workout for any fitness enthusiast, whether you’re a novice or seasoned gym-goer. (A little tip: These alternatives can add some zest to your lower-body sessions too.)

Mastering the Basics of the Hip Thrust

Before you leap into advanced variations, it’s crucial to get a grip on the standard hip thrust technique. This exercise can be performed using your body weight, or you can ramp up the difficulty with free weights like dumbbells or a barbell.

  1. Locate a bench or another stable raised platform that’s around the same height as your knees.
  2. Seat yourself on the floor with your upper back resting against the edge of the bench. Think of your shoulder blades as hooks securing you to the edge. Place your feet on the floor with a bend in your knees, setting them hip-width apart.
  3. When you’re seated with your hips lowered, your torso should create a 45-degree angle with the ground.
  4. Rest your hands behind your head.
  5. Tighten your abdominal muscles to keep your spine stable.
  6. Drive your heels down and elevate your hips skyward. Aim for a straight line from shoulders to knees, with your thighs forming a right angle as you peak in the movement.
  7. Bring your hips back down in a controlled manner.
  8. Perform 3 to 4 sets, doing 8 to 12 repetitions in each set.

“The glutes are often referred to as the powerhouse of the core. Building strength in our glutes with these variations of the hip thrust can amplify power in the lower body, improve hip movement and steadiness, bolster core muscle, and mitigate pain in the lower back.” —Ash Wilking, CPT

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