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Bret’s Booty-Blasting Protocol

By November 22, 2014December 29th, 2016Glute Training, Glutes

You guys gotta try this protocol. I’ve been hip thrusting for over 8 years now (October 10, 2006 was the night I first conjured up the idea of doing loaded, full range hip thrusts), and I’ve tried all sorts of protocols.

I’ve done high reps sets, medium rep sets, low rep sets, rest-pause reps, constant tension reps, pause reps, isoholds, explosive reps, eccentric-accentuated reps, one-and-a-half reps, drop sets, single leg, marching, from the floor, shoulders elevated, feet elevated, shoulders-and-feet-elevated, with posterior pelvic tilt, bodyweight, dumbbell, barbell, band, bar plus band, bar plus chain, band around the knees, and machine (click HERE to see all of the hip thrust methods).

I’ve also blended together different exercises and schemes. For example, HERE and HERE were my previous favorite glute burning protocols.

However, I’ve recently begun using a new protocol – on myself and my clients. In eight years of thrusting, my glutes have never burned so badly as they did from this protocol. Everyone who has performed the protocol so far has made the same claim – that they’ve never felt such a deep burn in their glutes before. I performed this protocol on Wednesday and it took me 10-15 minutes to walk properly afterwards. I’ve been on a quest to discover the best butt-burning formula, and this is my best so far. Here’s what the protocol entails:

Bret’s Booty-Burning Protocol

20 reps
45 seconds rest
15 reps
45 seconds rest
10 reps with 5 second isohold
20 seconds rest
10 reps with 30 second isohold

Here is my client Camille doing the entire protocol:

It takes just under 4 minutes to complete it, and your booty will be burning like crazy afterwards. In fact, you will probably find yourself making a face like the ones below right after you finish.

This is what your face will look like right after you finish this protocol

This is what your face will look like right after you finish this protocol

If you don’t have a Hip Thruster, you can set up bands in a power rack and use a bench. I’m sure that you could get crafty and utilize a barbell (if you have lifting partners they can add and subtract plates from the barbell, for example 95 x 20, 145 x 15, 195 x 10 plus 5 sec isohold, 95 x 10 plus 30 sec isohold – this could be achieved with just 25 lb plates so they’d be easy to load and strip) or chains to achieve a similar effect. What’s very nice about this protocol is that the next day I didn’t feel any glute soreness, nor did any of my clients. This allows for greater training frequency and recovery. It’s rigorous, but it doesn’t beat you up. My clients are now requesting to perform this at the end of all of their workouts. Give it a try and let me know what you think.


  • Joe Miller says:

    Love that last set of photos: it looks like the ‘Mountain Man Booty Blast’ LOL

  • s farnie says:

    What was the glute pump like after this Bret?

    • Bret says:

      I mentioned how I couldn’t walk properly for 10-15 minutes afterward. I was in Revolution Gym in Tempe and everyone was poking fun of me. Biggest glute pump I’ve ever attained.



  • B says:

    Can’t wait to try it! Just wondering, why did you have her close her fists? Is it because she looked funny or is it some kind of Jendrassik maneuver?

    • Bret says:

      I haven’t done any EMG experiments on this, but I feel like clinching the fists enhances glute activation with these. Some sort of irradiation effect. Plus it looks cooler. But I could be wrong, it could all just be in my head.

      • B says:

        Oh, now I’m very curious! If you ever do it, could you test fists+clenched teeth also? 😀 Thanks for this btw, ill make sure I measure my pump when i do this haha

        • B says:

          Ugh I accidentaly deleted the second part of my post, it said:
          Since the fists and the mouth are very close in the cortical motor humunculus, and the mouth has a very large cortex area, I thought that maybe if you have those neurons fire, it would create a better extracelular evironment for the other neurons, they’d be hipopolarized and it would be easier for the lower body neurons to fire, and more of them would fire. Just a silly hypothesis heh 🙂

          • Bret says:

            Well, you at least you know enough to guru the hell out of any typical meathead 😉 I will put this on the list of things to investigate in the future. I don’t think your hypothesis as outlandish, it seems plausible.

      • Carolina says:

        I wouldn’t doubt you are right. I’m a trained doula and in the birthing field there is a strong theory (though I don’t know if it has been proven) co-relating jaw/mouth muscles to pelvic floor, i.e. if the mouth is tight and clenched the same will be of the pelvic muscles, thus making childbirth more difficult. It may be that the same is true in fist – glute relation? I would be very curious to find out.

        On an interesting note, going back to Camille’s video during her last set, starting at the 3:03 mark, it is clearly visible how she instinctively tightens her jaw in the moment of thrusting up.

        Please keep us posted if you decide to do further testing on the subject!

  • Steph says:

    Yep! Someone questioned the post glute pump and your answer was what I had hoped (actually kinda knew) it would be. My major, major focus is to add glute mass without pudging out my waist ( I know I have to eat more and lift heavy…the struggle of balance. Ugggghhh) but I will try this workout today.
    Thanks for sharing as always!

  • Casey Smith says:

    Do you have a particular brand of bands you tend to gravitate toward?

    • Bret says:

      I got my long bands from Elitefts and from Sorinex, and both company’s are great. With the hip thrusts, I mostly use light, average, and strong bands and combine them depending on the lifter.

  • Good stuff Bret! it’s interesting that you mentioned clinching the fists enhances enhances glute activation through irradiation. I think this is 100% correct! I have done experiments in grip using a calibrated dyno and testing individuals crush strength both with and without the opposite hand being clinched in a fist. The results are always higher with the other fist clinched. The results vary but I have personally witnessed up to a 50 lb. increase with the opposing fist clinched. Ihave done experiments with individuals both seated and standing. results are always predictably higher! Irradiation is a testable and verifyable technique to enhance output forces on virtually and movement.

  • Muezz says:

    Hey Bret, big fan of yours. I just started doing hip thrusts this summer and its friggin’ awesome. I’m also often working out with my lady friends helping them get a round, firm butt. We do hip thrusts and they love it. But yesterday one old trainer came up to us saying that this exercise is totally dangerous and should not be performed. Especially for women and their backs. From the very beginning when I started out with the exercise I figured that this exercise might break my back if done improperly. Especially loaded. So that is what I’m teaching my friends. But still, I’d like to ask you, what are the dangers with this exercise? Would be helpful, thanks! And cheers from Lithuania!

    • Bret says:

      Muezz, the trainer that told you this is a freaking idiot. He’s the type that never learns anything new and forms his ignorant opinions based on faulty assumptions rather than experimentation, research, trial and error, anecdotes, etc. I have been doing these for 8 years and my back has never felt better or stronger. Many of my clients and readers have experienced the same thing. But you don’t want to hyperextend the spine. Watch this video:

      • Dunkman says:

        Agreed. Even going heavy (450+) I have absolutely no back issues. In fact, when I hip thrust after deadlifting, my back actually feels better.

      • Muezz says:

        Video explained it all. Well, “she”. And this old lady trainer has not much of a butt herself, that just made me think she might just have gotten pissed for not thinking about it and too proud to ask. Or she might not have gotten laid in a few decades.. Nevermind. Thanks for the good stuff 🙂

  • Lexxy says:

    Would this work with body weight? I can’t attach bands to the racks at my gym, and the ones I own wouldn’t work anyway (too small).

    • Bret says:

      Lexxy, if you’re a beginner then it would produce a good workout, but eventually you’ll need load. Dumbbells or light barbells can be used initially.

    • Kristen G says:

      Lexy, I have been doing band hip thrusts for months using the smith machine and attaching the bands to the hooks where the bar can lock in (hopefully that makes sense).

      Or you can try looking the bands under the feet of the rack.

      Good luck!

  • Kimberly says:

    Where could I purchase bands like these?

    • Bret says:

      I got my long bands from Elitefts and from Sorinex, and both company’s are great. With the hip thrusts, I mostly use light, average, and strong bands and combine them depending on the lifter.

  • Angel says:

    Which bands you recommend for the hip thruster? Where do you purchase yours from?

    • Bret says:

      I got my long bands from Elitefts and from Sorinex, and both company’s are great. With the hip thrusts, I mostly use light, average, and strong bands and combine them depending on the lifter.

  • Sue says:

    Are the bands 41″ inches in length?

  • Will be giving this a try! I have been doing a round of 4 exercises lately with no rest in between using a mini-band: seated abductors with a black and green mini-band around the knees for 40 reps, followed by hip trusts with just the black band for 20, followed by clams for 20 each side, followed by walking mini band step outs for 20 each side. Burn baby burn!! 😉 Banded hip thrusts, no matter with mini band or band across the hips makes my glutes work! 😉 Thanks Bret!!!

  • Charles Nankin says:

    not ideal, but i’m using the lying leg curl or leg extension machines to do my high-rep hip thrusts. looking for some bands.

  • Welser says:

    Hi all. Personally, I’ve experimented with all types of protocols and the one I have found to cause the greatest glute pump EVER, is a Hip thrust FST-15. 7 sets of 15 reps with 30 sec. rest. Give it a try, you’ll love it

  • Anne-lise says:

    Did this this morning.
    20x 45kg, 15x 65kg, 10x 75 kg with 5 sec hold, 10x 45kg with 30 sec hold.
    And that twice…
    My god. hahahaha
    Loved it!

  • Nick says:

    What’s the name of the brand of bands you used in this video, and what are their respective levels of difficulty?

  • Scott Brady says:

    Did this tonight after working up to a 5RM + 5 more rest/pause reps (10 x 180kg).

    Yup, it burns! Great booty finisher though.

    Cheers Bret

  • Nick C says:


    None of the squat cages at any of the commercial gyms in the area have pegs for bands. I want to make bands work. Any ideas?

  • Kristin Julia says:

    Hey !

    We don’t have the hip thruster at our gym, is it possible to do this in Smith ?

  • Eleri says:

    Hi Bret, love your work!
    I’m curious as to whether this protocol is best performed as a finisher to a workout, or perhaps on rest days? Maybe no difference? I like to perform bodyweight glute bridges and hip thrusts on my rest days and wondering if this is a better way.

  • Patricia Bellinghausen says:

    Dear Bret, love your work. The video is not available anymore. Could you fix this? Happy New Year!

  • Lorenza says:

    Hey Bret!!
    I have started following your program and I am training real hard… I am genetically predisposed to get quads TOO easy and I don’t like that.
    I read your article on how to get a bigger butt without growing legs and I am following your advice except for the deadlift as I like training my hammies once per week.
    Question about this post: as I feel hip thrust a lot in my quads even if I am now able to engage my glutes, do you think I can switch the hip thrust to a bridge floor thrust? I feel the elevated shoulder are contributing a lot in the quads activation and I want to avoid it… also can I perform this same exercise with elevated feet for example?
    Thanks for your help!!!

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