Category Archives: Glute Training

Charles Staley on Band Hip Thrusts

Charles Staley and I have been training together for almost two years. In fact, HERE is a “glute-off” we had a year ago, where we worked our way up to 600-lb hip thrusts. Strangely, Charles doesn’t feel barbell hip thrusts working his glutes much. This is hard for me to comprehend, since they make my glutes burn so bad I can hardly stand it (it often takes me twenty minutes just to walk properly following three sets of hip thrusts due to the massive glute pump).

At any rate, Charles doesn’t feel squats, deadlifts, lunges, back extensions, or hip thrusts in his glutes either. We often joke that he lacks glute muscles and that his hamstrings run right up into his back. He doesn’t feel anything working his glutes and never feels the burn. That is, until now. For some strange reason, certain lifters who struggle to feel their glutes will find that the band hip thrust does the trick. Here’s what Charles had to say after doing band hip thrusts for the first time:

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How to Get the Bar Over the Thighs When Hip Thrusting

Hi Bret, I absolutely love the hip thrust, but to be honest, I loathe setting up the exercise because I struggle to get into position. If I use a bar pad, I can’t get the bar over my thighs and onto my hips, and if I don’t use a bar pad, it hurts like hell on my pelvis. I want to continue to hip thrust, but this problem is really bothering me. I thought I’d come to the Glute Guy for a solution. Do you have any suggestions? – Andy

Hi Andy, you’ve come to the right place. Many dudes share this problem, and I have just the solution for you. Place plates or mats where the barbell would normally touch when hip thrusting, and simply roll the bar up onto the plates/mats as shown in the video below. This is how my lifting partner Charles Staley does them, and it makes a world of difference for males with big butts and thighs.

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How to Hip Thrust

Don't Be This Guy!

The first rule of hip thrusting: Never make direct eye contact while hip thrusting or when someone else is hip thrusting…things can get awkward rather quickly.

Don’t Be This Creep!

At this point, many lifters, especially my readers, believe the hip thrust to be the best glute development exercise.  However, the hip thrust also activates the hamstrings, quadriceps, and adductors very thoroughly as well. Therefore, it will help develop the entire thigh musculature. Throughout the movement, the glutes stay under constant tension, and back strength is not a limiting factor, which cannot be said of other popular glute building movements. This allows for maximal loading of the glute musculature.

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A Simple Test for Glute Activity

Robert A. Panariello MS, PT, ATC, CSCS
Professional Physical Therapy
Professional Athletic Performance Center
New York, New York

In recent years the gluteal muscle group has received much notoriety in the physical rehabilitation, fitness, and sports performance industries. Bret Contreras is one individual who has certainly carried the “gluteal torch” on his website, in books, and lectures in an attempt to educate sports performance and fitness professionals of the significance of this muscle group. The gluteal muscle group includes the gluteus maximus (one of the most powerful muscles in the body), medius, and minimus, which together make up the buttock. There is also documentation from those who consider the small tensor fasciae latae part of this muscle group as well.

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