November 5, 2022
Short and sweet. Before any workout involving the lower body, I recommend activating the glute muscles. Here’s why.
Glute activations are a way to wake up the muscles of the booty before they take on a more strenuous load through exercise, but they’re also a great hip and glute strengthener. In addition they stabilize the pelvic muscles which can help ease low back pain.
Most people have underactive glute muscles which can be harder for them to fire properly during exercise, therefore, other muscles compensate and do the lifting during the movement. Continued compensation can create faulty movement patterns & poor motor mechanics that can cause the secondary muscles to become overactive and lead to possible injury.
Many pregnant & postpartum women are sedentary which causes the glutes to become “sleepy” and deactivated.
Whether you call it “sleepy glutes”, “glute amnesia” or “deactivated glutes” it’s pretty common in pregnant and postpartum women. We become sedentary from being uncomfortable and tired during our pregnancy or nursing/pumping and recovering postpartum. As the saying goes, “If you don’t use it, you lose it” so while sitting to feel more comfortable and to rest might feel good, constantly doing so can actually turn off our glutes. That being said, even those who remain active can still have underactive glutes due to misalignment of the hips, tight hamstrings, and
poor movement patterns
Glute activations should be done at the beginning of your workout during the warmup, but they can also be done at the end of a workout for a booty finisher (or burner). Depending on my client and how they’re feeling that day, I like to switch up the exercises and alternate between lying on the ground or standing and either use bodyweight or loop bands for an added resistance.
There are a variety of glute activations to choose which can be overwhelming. Pick 1-2 exercises and perform 2 sets of 10-15 reps. Here are a few of my favorites: