For the last three weeks I have been working on my strength in the gym with my personal trainer Steve. After a long time off the bike I needed a way to build up my power and endurance and weight training is great for this.

Yesterday we worked on glute strength, with walking lunges, Bulgarian split squats and hip thrust to name a few.

In most of us today our glutes are not being fired up on a regular basis due to the fact we spend a long time sitting! Even though this is a big muscle group it gets lazy when it’s not used and weight training with exercises like squats, lunges and hip thrusts are a good way to build glute strength.

What’s a glute? The gluteal muscles are a group of three muscles which make up the buttocks: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The three muscles originate from the ilium and sacrum and insert on the femur. The functions of the muscles include extension, abduction, external rotation and internal rotation of the hip joint. So there pretty important!

Bulgarian split squats work the glute muscles as well as the upper leg muscles. The target muscle is the quadriceps with the gluteus maximus, soleus and adductor magnus working to assist. The hamstring, gastrocnemius, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus all act as stabilizers.

The glute bridge and the hip thrust are very effective, targeted and versatile exercises designed to activate the gluteal muscles. Being that the glutes are the largest muscle in the body (by surface area), they play an important role in hip movement and stabilization.