Tag Archives: glute strength

Strengthen Your Hips and Glutes with the Mini-Band Lateral Shuffle

27 Aug

If you want to increase your lower-body strength and powersprinting speed, and vertical jump, don’t underestimate the beneficial impact of strong hips and glutes.

When you don’t work your glutes, you miss out on working the largest muscle group in your body and burning a ton of calories and fat. You also aren’t as powerful or strong, since the bulk of your strength and power emanates from your core musculature — of which your hips and glutes are an important part — and not your extremities.

Additionally, when you’re not performing exercises that activate your hips and glutes, you also run the risk of injury because other muscles, that really can’t handle the load, take over.

The Mini-Band Lateral Shuffle is a great exercise to get your hip and glute muscles activated and firing.  Here’ how to do it:

  • Place the mini-band around both ankles (if you place the band higher up the leg, the exercise will be easier; if you place it around your ankles, it will be more difficult)
  • In starting position, your feet should be about hip-width to shoulder-width apart; toes should both be pointing forward and your feet should be parallel
  • Keep your hips low (butt down) and knees bent; you should assume a half-squat position
  • Step laterally with one foot, as far as you can (stretch the band), and then step in with the other foot (resist the band); always keep tension on the band when you are stepping and don’t let the feet come together
  • Remember, every time you step try to step as far apart as possible to really work the glutes
  • Do not drag the back foot when you step back in (also, try not to rock as you shuffle)
  • Perform 10 repetitions in one direction, rest 30 seconds, and repeat in the opposite direction

You can do one set or multiple sets.  We like our athletes to do one set of this exercise (both directions) as a “finisher,” at the end of each workout.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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Improve Speed and Power with Posterior Chain Exercises

14 Nov

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Glute-Ham Raise, with Spotter

Improvements in athletic performance begin with lower-body strength and power development.  Hip/quad exercises, like squats and leg presses, are great but, if you’re not working the muscles of your posterior chain, you’re only doing half the job.  (please refer to, Don’t Neglect Your Glutes and Hamstrings)

Your posterior chain includes the muscles of the glutes and hamstrings.  Your glutes are responsible for hip extension, while knee flexion is a function of the hamstrings.

Why is it so important for athletes to perform exercises that focus on the glutes and hamstrings? Here’s the deal: The glutes are a primary muscle group involved in virtually every sports movement — including sprinting, jumping, throwing, kicking, and swinging. The hamstrings are important for eccentric muscle movements, like decelerating when you slow down, stop, or change direction; or land after jumping.

Glute-ham exercises should be incorporated into your training regimen, every time you workout.  Working these two important muscle groups can help athletes improve speed and power; enhance balance and stability; and reduce the risk of injury.

Two of our favorite glute-hamstring exercises are the Glute-Ham Raise and Romanian Deadlift (RDL).  We like our athletes to perform them as an agonist-antagonist paired set (superset), combining them with a hip/quad focused exercise like a squat or deadlift.

A typical superset might look something like this:

  • Barbell Back Squat, 6 reps at about 80% 1RM
  • Body-weight squat jump, 6 reps (more advanced athletes can hold dumbbells at their sides when doing this exercise)
  • Body-weight Glute-Ham Raise, 6 reps (focus on lowering movement; lower body to a 4-second count; assist to upright position; this exercise can also be weighted, for more proficient athletes)

All three exercises should be performed consecutively, with little or no rest between them.  Rest for 10-15 seconds between sets (after Glute-Ham raise).  Perform 3-4 sets.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Strengthen Your Hips and Glutes with the Mini-Band Lateral Shuffle

13 Aug

20140812_19023920140812_190258If you want to increase your lower-body strength and power, sprinting speed, and vertical jump, don’t underestimate the beneficial impact of strong hips and glutes.

When you don’t work your glutes, you miss out on working the largest muscle group in your body and burning a ton of calories and fat. You also aren’t as powerful or strong, since the bulk of your strength and power emanates from your core musculature — of which your hips and glutes are an important part — and not your extremities.

Additionally, when you’re not performing exercises that activate your hips and glutes, you also run the risk of injury because other muscles, that really can’t handle the load, take over.

The Mini-Band Lateral Shuffle is a great exercise to get your hip and glute muscles activated and firing.  Here’ how to do it:

  • Place the mini-band around both ankles (if you place the band higher up the leg, the exercise will be easier; if you place it around your ankles, it will be more difficult)
  • In starting position, your feet should be about hip-width to shoulder-width apart; toes should both be pointing forward and your feet should be parallel
  • Keep your hips low (butt down) and knees bent; you should assume a half-squat position
  • Step laterally with one foot, as far as you can (stretch the band), and then step in with the other foot (resist the band); always keep tension on the band when you are stepping and don’t let the feet come together
  • Remember, every time you step try to step as far apart as possible to really work the glutes
  • Do not drag the back foot when you step back in (also, try not to rock as you shuffle)
  • Perform 10 repetitions in one direction, rest 30 seconds, and repeat in the opposite direction

You can do one set or multiple sets.  We like our athletes to do one set of this exercise (both directions) as a “finisher,” at the end of each workout.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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