You stuffed yourself during Thanksgiving, overindulged on everything you laid eyes on during Christmas, had to spend all that time with your relatives, weren’t TOO hungover after New Year’s Eve shenanigans… Well, congratulations — YOU MADE IT! And now it’s a new year, which means you can leave your regrets from 2015 behind and get back to business! Year after year, one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to start or maintain a fitness regimen. After my 20+ years as a soccer player (as a kid, through high school, college, all the way into my adult years!), a handful of half marathons and an addiction to ClassPass, I can help. And why not start with the biggest muscle in your body? YOUR BOOTY! Here are seven easy butt exercises to help you shake it into 2016.
Booty, booty, booty, booty, rockin’ everywhere. It’s time to turn on your favorite booty song and work what your momma gave you. Whether you choose “Bubble Butt,” “Bootylicious,” “Baby Got Back” or “Anaconda,” each of these exercises will get your booty moving to the beat.
All you need for the below exercises are a mat, hand weights and an exercise ball (optional)!
Exercise 1: Squat Kickback
Surprise, surprise, the first exercise is a squat! But this squat has a twist — err, a kickback, to be exact. Learn to love ’em.
1. Start with your feet a little wider than hip width.
2. Grab some hand weights and keep them right above your shoulders throughout the exercise.
3. Squat down pushing your booty back like you’re sitting in a chair. Keep your hips back, your core engaged and your weight in your heels.
4. As you come up from your squat, shift your weight to one leg and kick the other leg back by squeezing and tightening your gluteus muscle.
5. Come back to starting position, do another squat and kick back the other leg.
REPS: Do 2-3 sets of 10-15 reps on each leg
Exercise 2: Curtsey Lunge With Side Kick
Curtseying with a side kick? Sign me up!
1. Begin with your feet hip width apart and your core engaged.
2. Shift weight into one foot and lift the other foot off the ground and place it behind you.
3. Lower your butt toward the floor until the knee is about one inch from the ground and pause.
4. Press into the heel of your standing foot and stand up.
5. Do a side kick and repeat the exercise.
REPS: Do each leg continuously for one minute.
Exercise 3: Star Touches
You’re a star, and you know it! These are guaranteed to get your bum burnin’.
1. Start standing on one leg with your other leg bent 90 degrees behind you.
2. Slightly bend your standing leg (you never want to lock your knee out) and put your hands together in front of you, overlapping them.
3. You’ll be making a star on the floor with your hands, so pick your starting point.
4. Bend forward and touch your fingers to the first point on the floor.
5. Slowly come back up to starting position and bend down again to touch the second point on the floor.
6. Continue until you complete the star!
REPS: Complete two stars on each leg.
Exercise 4: Sprinter Lunge Back
Don’t freak out — you don’t have to sprint. These are pretty much backwards lunges with a small hop.
1. Stand on one foot and lunge back with your other foot.
2. Pause for a second and push off of your back foot, slightly jumping off the standing foot.
3. Drive your knee up to hip height.
4. Move your hand on the same side as the bent knee up to eye level and your other hand back behind you for balance.
5. Gently land back on your foot and immediately go back into your lunge.
REPS: Do each leg 10 times.
Exercise 5: Sumo Squat Calf Raise
You can’t have rock hard buns without toned legs. This exercise tones both the legs and glutes!
1. Start with your feet a little more than hip width apart and point the toes outward.
2. Squat down, making sure your spine is long and your knees never pass over your toes.
3. Once you are in your sumo squat, lift your heels for a quick calf raise.
4. Come back up to starting position.
5. Do another calf raise and go back down into your sumo squat with calf raise.
REPS: Do this exercise for one minute continuously.
Exercise 6: Superman Ball Raises
You will definitely be feeling like superwoman after this one.
1. Lie on your tummy with your arms above your head and hold an exercise ball between your feet (you can do this without an exercise ball if you don’t have one). Engage your abs and slowly start to lift your arms up.
2. Squeeze your glutes and tighten your leg grip on the ball.
3. Squeeze the ball and lift your knees, arms and chest off the floor.
4. Hold the superman squeeze for a five count and then slowly release your arms and legs back to the floor.
REPS: Do 10 Superman lifts.
Exercise 7: Side Lunge Slide
Now slide it out, slide it out.
1. Grab your hand weights and a towel and stand with your feet a little wider than hip distance apart with the towel folded under one foot. You need to be on a slick surface like a wood floor for this to work. No carpet!
2. As you squat down, shift your weight to the foot without the towel underneath.
3. Slowly bend your knee and squat down while sliding your foot with the towel underneath out to the side.
4. Keep the weight in the standing foot and slide the towel back to starting position.
5. Repeat with the other leg.
REPS: 10 on each leg.
High five, you just did WORK! Now don’t forget to give your booty some love and stretch it out. If you have a foam roller, even better! Don’t be scared if you’re super sore tomorrow. If you haven’t worked out that behind of yours in awhile, it’s going to be screamin’ at ya. But the pain will be worth it! Once you add these exercises into your weekly routine, you’ll have buns of steel in no time.
Tweet us your favorite buns exercises @BritandCo!