There is a lot of talk in the mainstream fitness world about the importance of building and strengthening the core, but your glutes are also incredibly important. If your glutes are weak, it can throw off your balance, your posture, your strength athletic performance. Your glutes are a massive grouping of muscles, and when they are weak, it can cause decreased mobility.
The body then over-compensates for that lack of function and mobility which leads to improper use of the rest of the muscles in the body.
Some signs and symptoms of weak glutes:
1. Knee pain
Chronic knee pain can often be the result of poor glute strength.
2. Poor movement in exercises like squats and lunges
For example if your knees collapse in, if your knees shift forward, if you have poor back hinge mechanics, or if you struggle to really “screw” your feet into the floor (toes or heels constantly come up) chances are you aren’t properly recruiting your glutes which leads to weakness.
3. Lack of soreness
For example if you execute a big compound like a deadlift or a squat and aren’t sore in your glutes the day after that’s an issue.
4. Your back flexors are tight
Most of us have imbalances between front to back, or the anterior and posterior of the body. Tight h-ip flexors can indicate weak and inactive glutes. This can also lead to an anterior pelvic tilt and back pain.
5. Weak ankles
Do you often roll your ankles? Do your feet pronate? Do you have a lack of balance and stability standing on one leg? This all indicates disengaged glutes.
6. Poor posture
If you have bad posture or if you’re hunching over during the day, it could mean you’re in need of some glute strengthening. You might also get lower back pain as a result of poor gluteal muscles.
7. Recurring foot pain and blisters
I find this is particularly true of runners who have an abnormal foot strike as a result of weak glutes. But in general, foot pain, inflammation and blisters can indicate poor biomechanics stemming from weak or inactive glutes.
Glute Strengthening Tips
1-Try adding in some form of glute activation exercise daily. Exercises like bridges, single-leg bridges, single-leg deadlifts, side lunges, lunge holds, squat holds, glute extensions, and even something as simple as a single-leg stand (eyes closed and glutes tight) is all it takes to wake up the glutes. Take five minutes daily to add these in or plug them into your training as primers before any lower body focused work.
2-It also helps to strengthen your mind to muscle connection. Actively think about your glutes when training and continue to remind yourself to engage them throughout your workout.
3-Squeeze them. I know it sounds strange but squeezing your glutes together hard prior to executing a major compound like a squat or deadlift can help wake them up and encourage you to recruit them during the exercise.
This is how people reacted to this post:
Sara D: “Oh my gosh yes! My glutes have gotten so weak, and I never understand when people say that squats are a good workout for glutes. I always feel squats and lunges in my quads and a little in my hamstrings. Thank you so much for this!”
BDet313: “Yeah, Im definitely quad dominant. I did a glute/hami focused workout a few days ago and the only thing that has been sore are my quads”
fuscia: “I’m quad dominant, even at the age of 9 I had huge quad muscles that just bow out from my leg. I don’t like how it looks.”
J T: “Thank you!! I felt a bit emotional when you said “it will take time” because I was expecting too much of myself after 4 weeks. I am so quad dominant!”
Maha Ahmed: “Thank you for addressing this problem it’s feels great to know that someone else has dealt with this to give me hints because I thought it was just me and my lower back is getting effect because I can’t strengthen my gluts”
M P: “in one leg i’m quad dominant, in the other i’m able to feel my glute working … what should i do to fix this issue ?”
gibby35412: “I’m a guy and have dealt with quad dominant pain for YEARS. I like that you made it clear that this isn’t an overnight fix. I’ve started a similar protocol for about 3 weeks and will incorporate these exercises, remembering it TAKES TIME.”
This article was originally published on the fitnesstopfives.com