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Your booty is the boss of your push-off initiating the action of moving your body forward in all physical pursuits. Getting your rear in gear by activating your glutes will optimize your power in any workout or sport.
Problem: Lazy glutes set off a chain reaction of imbalance. When they are not doing their job, muscles including the quads, hamstrings, the muscles around your low back, and even the calves have to work overtime. This leads to all kinds of compensation pain and the most common running injuries.
The Gluteus Maximus occupies the bottom portion of each cheek and is the largest of your glute muscles – it should be doing most of the work!
Solution: Wake up your butt by activating and strengthening your glute max. Locate the place where your butt meets your hamstrings, and they will be easier to engage.
Are your glutes working too hard or not enough?
– Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet on the floor about hip width apart.
– Press down through your feet and lift your hips up so that your thighs and torso create a straight diagonal line from your knees to your shoulders.
– Bring one hand onto each butt cheek and cop a feel: Are the muscles clenched hard, or are they soft? Are they both engaged the same amount?
– Note your tendency.
Instead of squeezing tight or just hanging out, try this:
– Engage glute max – the bottom part of each cheek, around where your butt meets your hamstrings. If that’s elusive, use your hands to feel the muscles at work.
– Give it about 50 percent of your effort so that flute max doesn’t clench but does its job.
– Feel for equal engagement between your right and left sides.