How to Get a Better Butt
Experts recommend exercises to help you sculpt a shapelier backside.
It seems shapely backsides are more fashionable than ever. Witness the many
images of curvaceous stars on the pages of celebrity magazines, the popularity
of $150-a-pair low-rise jeans, and even Justin Timberlake's hit pop song
Everywhere you turn, eyes are on bottoms. And whatever the shape of your
butt, chances are, you want to improve upon it.
"At the very least, 99% of the women I train want to work with the
glutes," says Paul Sorace, a trainer in Bayonne, N.J.
Just as many men equate having a muscular chest with being buff, for lots of
women, "having a fit body is having a tighter set of buns," says
"If a woman feels confident about having great glutes, she’s not too shy
to show it off," adds Marilyn Gansel, a fitness trainer and owner of
wellness studios in Stanford and Kent, Conn. "People are starting to see
that curves are sexy."
But can we actually get those round, lifted, and chiseled derrieres
so many of us covet?
It depends in large part on our genetics, says fitness trainer Janet
"When women ask me, 'How do I get a great butt?' my response is always:
'What you’re born with is what you have to work with,'" she says.
So if you're genetically programmed to have a flat backside, short of
getting buttock implants (don’t laugh, there is such a thing), you can lunge
and squat all day and you probably won’t be able to replicate Jessica Biel’s
That doesn’t mean you can’t improve upon your strength or shape, she
"Can you make a difference?" asks Gansel. "Yes. I think we can
bring it as far as your body will allow it to go. We just need to set realistic
Maximizing Your Assets
The butt consists of three main muscles: the gluteus maximus, gluteus
medius, and gluteus minimus. They work together to help us move our upper legs
in all directions.
"Every time you take a step, you’re using your glute muscles," says
Roget. "That’s why we have glutes. Their function is to allow us to run,
walk, squat and move. You’re working your rear end all the time."
As you might expect, walking is great for the glutes. For maximum impact,
tackle some hills if you're walking outside, or use the incline if you're on a
treadmill. Just make sure you keep your back from hinging forward, says
Stair machines, arc trainers and elliptical trainers are also great
butt-shaping choices, she says. For variety, suggests Sorace, try in-line
skating or cycling (inside or out).
After working up a sweat aerobically, try these six butt-busting strength
exercises recommended by our experts: