With stars like Kim Kardashian and Nicki Minaj flaunting their assets, and hashtags like #belfie (that’s a butt selfie, FYI) making the rounds on social media, we think it’s fair to say that butts have never been bigger (or, at least, we’ve never been prouder of our butts). Heck, Viners are being paid six figures for their bottoms now!
*Note: Always consult a medical or fitness professional before trying new exercises. And no, Nicki is not a medical or fitness professional.
Surf trainers are the latest total-body-workout machines promising to lift and tone bottoms. As a technological advance, they have the power to bring California’s coolest sport to any climate, and devotees hope to score a typically toned Hollywood body with the technique. Surfset-brand boards can be found at gyms in Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal, Orillia, Ont., and Guelph, Ont., and a new studio is opening in Toronto this month. (Click here to find a class near you.)
Oh, and while we’ve got you, here’s a gratuitous video of Coco working it on an unrelated surf machine.
Want to get your twerk on like Miley, Rihanna, Nicki and, um, everyone? Twerkshops and twerkouts are shaking booties in gyms and dance studios across the country. Brass Vixens Pole Dancing & Fitness Studios in Toronto promises that twerking is “an amazing way to get your backside into shape!” Google twerking (or alternate terms like twerkout and twerkshop) classes near you, or hit YouTube for inspiration.
Sure, fancy machines and hot dance routines are fun, but if you want to simplify your race to the bottom, Los Angeles trainer Christine Khuri offers a 15-minute butt workout that requires nothing more than an Internet connection, a yoga mat and willpower.
Drop it like a squat
“Squats are the number one exercise for burning fat, increasing lean muscle and improving your mobility, balance, strength and shaping those buttocks!,” says celebrity trainer Lisa Reed. “Not only do they burn more calories and use more muscles than any other exercise, but squats give you that bubble butt that we all desire! Ladies, do not be afraid to lift those weights! Squats are the best functional exercise for strength that you can perform anywhere using your body weight, but you will really see a difference when you add weight and squat!”
- Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder width with baby toes pointed slightly out.
- Initiate the squat movement by sitting back with the hips first (many people just bend their knees, which is terrible form and can actually cause knee pain).
- Emphasize driving your heels through the ground on the descent and ascent of the squat.
- The abs should be engaged the entire time and the breath should be controlled throughout.
- A great beginner modification is to stand six inches away from a chair and shift back from the hips to sit on the chair with your bum on the middle of the chair, then immediately stand back up.
Jimmy Minardi is a high intensity trainer in New York City, the Hamptons, Santa Barbara, Calif., and Aspen, Colo. He recommends Superman/Supergirl for a great derriere.
On a yoga mat:
- Lie on your stomach with toes flat on the floor, chin resting on the ground.
- Stretch your arms out to the front as far as you can.
- Take a deep breath in and lift chest, arms, legs and thighs off the floor.
- Make a gentle effort to stretch your arms and legs away from your torso.
- As you exhale, gently lower your chest, arms and legs.
Trainer Kevin Bellinger of Belles Fitness in New York City suggests hip lift progressions to “relieve tension in your lower back and work your butt at the same time.”
- Lie on your back with your arms at your sides with your knees bent and your feet on the floor.
- Lift your hips toward the ceiling. Hold for one count, then lower back down.
- Repeat the lifts for sixty seconds, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings at the top of the range of motion. Be careful not to overarch your spine.
- To make this exercise more difficult, extend one leg at the top of the lift. Keep your thighs parallel and hold the lifted position for about five seconds.
- Keeping your hips up, place your foot back on the floor and then lower your hips.
- Repeat this exercise for 30 seconds; switch sides and do the move for another 30 seconds on the other leg.
Tap that sass
Bellinger also recommends toe taps, noting, “the lower, looser part of my butt takes a beating from this move.”
- Lie on the floor with your arms at your sides.
- Lift your feet, bending both knees to 90 degrees so your thighs are perpendicular to the floor.
- Now, slowly and quietly tap your left toes to the floor, followed by your right.
- Alternate tapping feet for one minute.
- If you feel any lower back pain, don’t bring your toes all the way down.
Bellinger uses single leg front raises to stretch, balance and tighten glutes. “This is a multi-reward move that requires less coordination than you might think,” he says.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a five-pound dumbbell in each hand.
- Bend your right leg and raise it about three inches off the floor.
- Extend both arms in front of you at chest height with your palms facing down.
- Keeping your arms straight, raise your left arm above your head and hold for three counts, then return to chest height.
- Continue alternating arm raises until you’ve done eight total, four reps on each arm.
- Now switch legs, doing eight more reps standing on your right leg.