The Most Common Glute Exercise Mistakes: Avoid These Mistakes
January 13, 2022
When it comes to working out, one of the most popular areas of the body to target is the glutes. Strong glutes not only enhance your physical appearance, but they also play a vital role in proper body mechanics and overall athletic performance. However, many people make glute exercise mistakes that not only hinder their progress but also increase their risk of injury.
Glute exercise mistakes can be anything from poor form to an incorrect selection of exercises. With the popularity of social media fitness influencers and online workout routines, it’s easy to fall into the trap of trying to mimic what you see without fully understanding the proper technique and mechanics of each exercise.
Some of the most common glute exercise mistakes include using momentum instead of muscle contraction, neglecting to activate the glutes before starting an exercise, and relying on machines rather than free weights to target the glutes.
If you’re serious about building a strong, functional, and aesthetically pleasing set of glutes, it’s crucial to learn how to avoid these common mistakes and focus on proper form and technique. By doing so, you’ll not only see better results but also reduce your risk of injury and ensure that you’re making the most of your time in the gym.
In this article, we will discuss some of the most common glute exercise mistakes and provide tips on how to correct them to maximize the benefits of your workouts.
7 Mistakes to Avoid During Your Glute Workouts
Here are 7 Mistakes to Avoid During Your Glute Workouts:
1. Not Using Enough Resistance or Not Focusing on the Negative Rep
It is especially important to have enough resistance with glute exercises because most will use compound exercises for their movements, which means they are being used in conjunction with other muscle groups that often have a greater threshold of strength than your glutes do.
For example, let’s say you are using the hip thrust. Your hamstrings and quads could be stronger than your glutes which means that they will take over for the movement, thus not fully engaging the glutes. That is why it is important to have enough weight or resistance so that once your body starts moving toward the ceiling, it will be forced to stop at the top of the motion, where you get a good contraction in your bum.
2. Sliding Into Hip Thrusts Instead of Pushing With Your Feet
When performing hip thrusts, I often see people put their hands on the floor and slide themselves forward so that they can change positions and go further into the exercise, but sliding into hip thrusts is not how this should be done.
Instead of sliding yourself forward, you should be pushing with your feet to elevate your body so that you can move toward the top portion of the movement. I find this mistake frequently when people are doing hip thrusts wearing socks or slippery shoes.
I know that shoes like that can help you move better, but it is important to either put your socks on the outside of your shoes or change into a pair that doesn’t have as much traction. If you’re using a slick floor for any of your exercises such as a gym floor, do this instead: start with your feet at the bottom portion of the exercise; once you are in place, slowly push yourself away from it.
3. Not Flexing Your Glutes at the Top of Hip Thrusts & Bridges
I like to tell people that hip thrusts and glute bridges aren’t meant to be “bouncy” exercises; instead, they should be more like “squeeze and hold” movements.
That means that it is important to make sure you focus on flexing your glutes as hard as possible at the top of these movements (when your bum is pushed toward the ceiling) before releasing it back down. If you’re having trouble feeling this part of the movement, flex your thighs as well. Doing so will engage those muscles and help you better activate your glutes.
4. Not Lifting Your Feet When Doing Deadlifts & Barbell Swings
When doing deadlifts or barbell swings—two classic glute exercises that are often overlooked by trainers—it is vital that you keep your feet flat on the floor.
If you lift your feet off the ground, not only will it take the load off your glutes and make your workout less effective, but it will also put a lot of pressure on your lower back as you lean forward with the weight.
5. Going Too Heavy & Using Large Range of Motion on Hip Thrusts
Let’s say that someone is new to glute training and decides to start out by using a light resistance band for hip thrusts. As they become more advanced or as they follow incorrect programming, they might increase their resistance too much, which can cause them not to be able to use a full range of motion for this exercise—which is extremely important!
As I mentioned, these glute exercises should be “squeeze and hold” movements; that means that you should not be able to go all the way up into the movement without stopping.
6. Lifting One Foot When Doing Hip Thrusts
You may sometimes see people perform hip thrusts by lifting one foot off the ground (sometimes as high as six inches) or having someone stand next to them and stabilize themselves on their leg/foot, but both of those techniques are incorrect for several reasons.
Not only does it take away from the effectiveness of the glutes since you’re using other muscles besides your bum to complete this exercise, but it can also put a lot of pressure on your knee joint and do damage to your lower if you aren’t careful.
7. Letting the Weight Push Your Butt Out Instead of Engaging it to Drive Up
It is crucial that you engage your glutes when doing hip thrusts/bridges/deadlifts—exercises that are meant to target this muscle group. That means that you should not let your backside push out as the weight comes down toward you, but instead drive up with your glutes so that they are in line with the rest of your body.
That is especially important on hip thrusts since most people will want to use heavier weights than other exercises such as bridges and deadlifts during this movement. If you aren’t using heavy weights for these types of exercises, then it won’t be as much of a problem for you to accidentally push your butt out during the motion.
Proper form and technique are essential when it comes to glute exercises. Avoiding common mistakes and following the correct form will not only prevent injury and discomfort but also help you to build stronger glutes. By paying attention to your body and using the right technique, you can improve your glute workouts and achieve better results.
Remember to focus on the mind-muscle connection, engage your core, and gradually increase the intensity of your workouts to avoid plateauing. With dedication and patience, you can achieve the strong, toned glutes you desire while minimizing the risk of injury or setbacks. Keep these tips in mind and continue to work towards your fitness goals with a strong focus on proper form and technique.