Can you do this with your gluteal muscles?
Although you may get a good giggle from watching this video and then trying to practice it for yourself, there is a very serious side to why it’s important that you engage your gluteal muscles (butt).
Prolonged sitting or lying can cause wastage of the gluteal muscles as well as other muscles of the body.
Why Is Prolonged Sitting Dangerous?
As well as causing muscle wastage, sitting for extended periods of time can be a huge drain on your overall health and wellbeing. Type 2 diabetes, bone wastage, and mental health issues are amongst some of the other side effects.
“Humans are built to stand upright,” says an article on Better Health Channel, a site funded by the Victoria State Government in Australia. “Your heart and cardiovascular system work more effectively that way.
“Your bowel also functions more efficiently when you are upright. It is common for people who are bedridden in hospital to experience problems with their bowel function. When you are physically active, on the other hand, your overall energy levels and endurance improve, and your bones maintain strength.”
What Do the Gluteal Muscles Do?
The butt muscles play a huge factor in your overall stability and mobility. They also take part in your pelvic function.
They can assist in keeping your pelvic floor and back muscles stabilised which in turn can support you with urinary and bowel incontinence.
Building strength in your gluteal muscles will also assist in improving your posture and balance and keeping your back, hamstring or knee injuries at bay.
How Do I Strengthen My Gluteal Muscles?
There are many different options for exercises to strengthen your gluteal muscles. Squats or standing from sitting in a chair, leg lifts, bridges and lunges are some ideas.
Like the video above shows, simply squeezing your butt cheeks together or trying to squeeze them independently can also begin to bring strength into those areas.
Try This: If you are having trouble independently squeezing your cheeks, simply bring awareness to each cheek and think about squeezing it. Even if it is not working, keep thinking about the act of squeezing and keep practicing. Try this for 30 seconds at a time once or twice a day with adequate rest.
Another idea is to lay on your bed and squeeze your cheeks independently so you can feel the feedback that your bed provides underneath you.
Whatever you decide to choose to strengthen your gluteal muscles, consistency is key. A good program will include rest days also. Be careful not to overdo the exercises and only squeeze at around 50% capacity. Less is more in building strong, healthy gluteal muscles, and careful consideration is best when adapting to something new.
If you’re looking for workout ideas, you can download Rachell’s free workout guide to a strong body.
How many hours, on average, do you sit in a day? Do you feel that your lower body has weakened because of too much sitting? Are you doing exercises for your gluteal muscles? How often do you work your butt and upper legs? Please share your favorite butt exercise below!