How to Get a Nice Butt

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Who doesn't want a nice, strong, sculpted butt? The reality is that it takes a lot of hard work and exercise to sculpt your butt into something that stops traffic. Plan on working on your butt for at least 3 months before you see a noticeable difference.

Things You'll Need

  • Exercise step or platform
  • 10-lb. hand weights (optional)
  • Exercise ball (optional)
  • There are two types of exercise required to sculpt your butt: cardio and strength training. Set a goal for 45 to 60 minutes of cardio exercise every day to firm up your butt muscles as well as burn any extra fat. Cardio is any type of exercise that uses large muscles, such as your legs or arms, continuously for at least 30 minutes. The best types of cardio for a great butt are stair climbing, hiking in hilly terrain and walking on an incline. Be sure to wear supportive shoes and warm up for 5 to 10 minutes before you push up the intensity during exercise.

  • Perform strength training every other day to allow your muscles to rest and grow strong. Schedule strength training either Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday or Monday-Wednesday-Friday to allow optimum rest time. Strength training 3 days per week will give you the best results, but you'll see progress even with just 2 days per week.

  • Perform squats, which is a personal trainer favorite for a strong and shapely butt. The basic squat is performed by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down as if you're going to sit in a chair, keeping your abdominal muscles tight and your back straight. Protect your knees by keeping them behind your toes--make sure you can look down at your feet and always see your toes during the length of the squat. Squat down until your bent knees form a 90-degree angle. Do 10 to 15 repetitions, slowly squatting down and then standing back up. There are many variations of squats that work your butt, hip and thigh muscles in different ways: squat with an exercise ball between your back and a wall, squat holding a 10-lb. weight in each hand or use a squat machine at the gym. Start with 10 to 15 repetitions of one squat exercise, and each week add another 10 to 15 repetitions of an additional squat variation. After 4 weeks you'll be doing four different exercises.

  • Do some lunges. Lunges are a modified form of a squat that focus in on your legs, thigh and hamstring muscles. Stand with both feet directly under your shoulders. Step forward with your right leg, planting your right foot on the floor 2 feet in front of you. Bend both knees so that your right knee comes to a 90-degree angle and your left knee almost touches the floor. Return your right leg back to the starting position. Alternate right and left legs for a total of 10 to 15 repetitions on each leg. There are also a variety of ways to perform lunges: walking lunges where you alternate bringing your right and left legs forward so that you "walk" around the room, reverse lunges where you bring your leg behind you instead of in front of you or hold a 10-lb. dumbbell in each hand as you lunge. Start with 10 to 15 repetitions of the basic lunge, and each week add another 10 to 15 repetitions of another lunge variation.

  • Perform a step up on a bench or platform that is no higher than knee height to protect your knees. The basic movement is to step up onto the bench with your right leg, then step up with your left leg. Step down with your right leg, then step down with your left leg. Continue stepping up and down for 1 minute. Vary the exercise by stepping up only with your right leg. As you step up with your right leg, raise your left knee to waist height. Keep your right foot on the platform and touch your left foot back to the floor. Continue lifting your left knee and then stepping back with your left foot for 15 repetitions. Switch sides and step up with your left leg and raise your right knee.

Tips & Warnings

  • Perform all exercises slowly and under control to really focus on using your muscles.
  • Wear supportive footwear doing all types of activities.
  • Check with your physician before beginning any type of exercise program.
  • If you have trouble with your knees, ask for a referral to a physical therapist before doing any of these exercises.
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