If you have a desk job and sit on your tush all day, then there’s a high chance you may be suffering from a lazy bottom or ‘dormant butt syndrome’. We kid you not…
Why are the glutes so important?
The gluteal muscles (made up of the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus) not only make us look great in a pair of leggings but they are the powerhouse of the human body. They are the largest and strongest muscle group and are integral to daily movements like walking and running.
“The glutes are without a doubt the most important muscle group in the body when it comes to proper function, health and overall strength,” says personal trainer and P.volve founder Stephen Pasterino. “Consider, if you will, the glute as the engine of the body – if it isn’t working properly, nothing else will either.”
“They react to and control everything from the waist down to the foot, and from the lower back up to the shoulders,” he continues. “If you want to be at your strongest, you have to have a fully activated butt. It’s just fact. If you want to tone your legs, tighten your lower stomach, fix your posture, and create that muscular symmetry, you simply can’t do it without first strengthening the butt.”
What is ‘dormant butt syndrome’?
Dormant butt syndrome basically means your glute muscles have forgotten what to do and are not activating properly or ‘firing up’ as it’s often referred to. A common cause of this is sitting at a desk for prolonged periods of time which causes the hip flexors to tighten and the glutes to become weak. “At first, I thought this concept sounded ridiculous—I mean, how can anyone not use their glutes every day?” says Stephen. “But I soon learned that, in the world of physical therapy, this was a massive issue when it comes to rehabilitating patients from injuries.”
What happens if you don’t activate your glutes?
When your glutes become lazy it can cause other muscles to pick up the slack, which can lead to imbalances in the body and problems such as lower back, hip, knee and ankle pain. “Without proper glute function and strength, your body will rely heavily on the thighs to take you through exercises, which I have seen result in swelling and over-developed thigh muscles without fail,” explains Stephen. “Creating the proper glute function in all three planes of motion (frontal, sagittal, and transverse) is essential to getting the thighs to lean out and take on a natural shape without the bulking.”
3 glute activation exercises using the P.volve method
Butt lift with light ankle band
1. Start on all fours slightly shifted back so your shoulders are behind your hands. Square your hips and engage your core
2. Lift one leg 90 degrees to hip height so your toe is facing up
3. Lift your leg up, maintaining the bended knee, and bring back down to hip height
4. Repeat eight times on each side
High bridge squeeze with exercise ball
1. Sit with your legs in front of you and your hands facing your heels with the ball between your legs
2. Lift up to a flat back, engage the ball from your lower glutes
3. Bring your hips down and hover over the floor
4. Repeat eight times
Leg lift with p.3 trainer
1. Start on all fours with attached ball in one hand, palm facing down, with the other directly under opposite shoulder
2. Ensure ankle strap and clip are facing outward
3. Pull the attached knee in on an internal angle to hip height before extending back out to starting position
4. Repeat 8 times on both sides
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