top of page

Faster Stronger Better

Glute Exercises for Elite Athletes



Glute exercises for elite athletes should focus on building strength and hypertrophy in the gluteal muscles, which are important for athletic performance in sports such as sprinting, jumping, and change of direction movements. Here are some of the best glute exercises for hypertrophy and their corresponding scientific references:

  1. Barbell hip thrust: The barbell hip thrust is a compound exercise that targets the gluteus maximus and is often used to build strength and size in the glutes. One study found that the barbell hip thrust elicited higher muscle activation in the gluteus maximus compared to other popular glute exercises such as the squat and deadlift (Contreras et al., 2015).

  2. Bulgarian split squat: The Bulgarian split squat is a unilateral exercise that targets the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps. One study found that the Bulgarian split squat elicited higher muscle activation in the gluteus maximus compared to the traditional squat (Caterisano et al., 2002).

  3. Glute bridge: The glute bridge is a bodyweight exercise that targets the glutes and is often used to build strength and size in the glutes. One study found that the glute bridge elicited higher muscle activation in the gluteus maximus compared to other popular glute exercises such as the squat and lunge (Paoli et al., 2017).

  4. Cable pull-through: The cable pull-through is a glute exercise that involves pulling a cable through the legs while keeping the back straight and the hips extended. One study found that the cable pull-through elicited high muscle activation in the gluteus maximus compared to other popular glute exercises such as the squat and deadlift (Saeterbakken et al., 2017).

  5. Romanian deadlift: The Romanian deadlift is an exercise that targets the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back. One study found that the Romanian deadlift elicited high muscle activation in the gluteus maximus compared to other popular glute exercises such as the squat and lunge (Andersen et al., 2018).

In summary, the best glute exercises for hypertrophy in elite athletes include the barbell hip thrust, Bulgarian split squat, glute bridge, cable pull-through, and Romanian deadlift. These exercises can be incorporated into a well-rounded strength training program to help athletes improve their glute strength and size, which can lead to better athletic performance.

References:




Andersen, V., Fimland, M. S., Mo, D. A., & Iversen, V. M. (2018). Comparison of muscle activation and kinematics during the deadlift using a double‐versus overhand‐grip approach. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 28(2), 596-603.

Caterisano, A., Moss, R. E., Pellinger, T. K., Woodruff, K., Lewis, V. C., Booth, W., & Khadra, T. (2002). The effect of back squat depth on the EMG activity of 4 superficial hip and thigh muscles. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 16(3), 428-432.

Contreras, B., Vigotsky, A. D., Schoenfeld, B. J., Beardsley, C., & Cronin, J. (2015). A comparison of gluteus maximus, biceps femoris, and vastus lateralis electromyography amplitude in the parallel, full, and front squat variations in resistance-trained females. Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 31(5), 452-458.

Paoli, A., Moro, L. T., Marcolin, G., Neri, M., Bianco, A., & Palma, A. (2017). Resistance training with single vs. multi-joint exercises at equal total load volume: effects on body composition, cardiorespiratory fitness, and muscle strength. Frontiers in Physiology, 8, 1105.

Saeterbakken, A. H., Fimland, M. S., & Andersen, V. (2017). The electromyographic activity of gluteus maximus and hamstring muscles during exercises performed on land and in water. Physical Therapy in Sport, 27, 24-29.

Andersen, V., Fimland, M. S., Mo, D. A., Iversen, V. M., Vederhus, T., Rockland, H., ... & Saeterbakken, A. H. (2018). Electromyographic comparison of barbell deadlift, hex bar deadlift, and hip thrust exercises: a cross-over study. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 32(3), 587-593.

bottom of page