Authored by Kimberly Back in Exercise
Published on 06-08-2009
Nearly everyone is looking for a way to improve their body image, and with celebrities like Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian being plastered all over the Internet and magazines, the gluteus maximus is getting more attention than ever. A firm butt has now become the hottest accessory, and many are scrambling to try and find the best workout to whip their booties into shape. With these tips you can have the firm butt that you have always dreamed of just in time for summer. And, the best thing? They don’t require a gym membership.
Squats: Sometimes simple really is best, and time and time again squats are shown to be the best exercise to firm and tone the butt. The basic squat consists of placing your feet slightly more than shoulder-with apart and then extending your arms forward, keeping them parallel for balance. Then, tip your torso forward slightly and bend your knees until your thighs are parallel with the ground. Next, return to an upright position by pushing through your heels, and squeezing or contracting your butt muscles. Keep in mind that you should try hard not to bounce back to the starting position; your movements should be controlled. Many people choose to add weights or exercise bands to this move for additional resistance.
Lunges: This exercise is nearly as popular as the squat, and it is just as simple. Stand with your feet about shoulder with apart, facing straight ahead. Then, step (lunge) forward with one foot while staying centered over your ankle. Make sure that your knee does not extend over your toes, because this can lead to hyper extending the tendons in your knee or foot. Your other foot should stay stationary. Push off your heel and back to your original position. You can work one side at a time, or alternate sides. This exercise not only firms and tones your butt, but also is great for your legs.
Kickbacks : Get down on your hands and knees, and make sure that your knees are bent at a 90 degree angle. Then, kickback with one leg so that your foot stretches higher than your head, or make sure that your thigh horizontally lines up with your torso. Bring your leg back down to its original position. With this exercise it is easier to work one side at a time and then move to the other. If you properly squeeze your buttocks as you extend your leg you will really feel the burn. This is a very effective exercise.
Vary your routine: In addition to these firming and toning exercises, you should also try to vary your workout routine from time to time. If you usually run or swim, try cycling or hiking. Changing up your fitness routine not only will shape and firm additional muscles, but also will keep things fresh and interesting. This will make it so that you are more likely to stick to your workout schedule.
You may also see enhanced results by incorporating a healthy diet into your fitness and nutrition regimen. For added inspiration keep photos on your bathroom mirror or nightstand of celebrities with the butt that you would like to have. You can also write inspirational quotes on sticky notes to keep yourself motivated. Strategically place your notes around your home on your bathroom mirror, refrigerator, etc. As always, with any exercise regimen, please consult your physician before beginning.