Updated: Mar 23, 2021
Our gluteal muscles (glutes) are the muscles in our bottoms and whilst many of us might tend to think of them mostly in terms of aesthetic appeal, they are actually a truly crucial part of our human body. They are our largest muscle group and incorporate 3 different muscles; the gluteus maximus (the main larger muscle in the bottom) and the gluteus medius and minimus (2 smaller muscles that assist our movement). Our glutes have a huge impact upon our overall strength and play an essential role in our movement patterns – think about it they are used for really basic functions such as standing, sitting and walking.
They are a muscle group that is often under-worked because many of us, by necessity, lead sedentary lifestyles. This lack of everyday work by the glutes can leave them weak and unable to activate properly when we do actually workout. Many people find their hamstrings and quads tend to dominate to compensate for their weak glutes.
Making a real effort to keep our glutes strong and toned can have enormous health advantages. Strong glutes give stability to the spine and can help to prevent pain in, amongst other areas, the neck, the knees, the lower back, the hip flexors and the ankles. This is because the human body is highly interconnected. Weak glutes, for example, can alter the way in which we walk and cause our knees to move sideways and face greater strain than they are designed to withstand. This can lead to considerably pain and lasting damage which may even necessitate surgery.
For those of us for whom sport is a major part of our lives, there is no doubt that strong glutes can help boost our athletic performance. By strengthening our bottoms we can improve our balance, our speed of turn and our ability to run, jump and stop. Sportspeople who focus upon developing strong, healthy glutes should gain a major advantage over their less dedicated competitors.
Here at Functional Fitness we are committed to ensuring that our clients work their glutes correctly so we give appropriate exercises and closely supervise technique to ensure that the glutes are being fired. After all, if you are not actually firing your glutes you cannot strengthen them. We try to get our clients to really focus mentally upon this part of the body to enable them to work and squeeze the correct muscles. We aim to get your glutes working harder than they have in years so that you reap the rewards of a stronger, healthier body and, as a welcome spinoff, achieve an athletic and strong-looking bottom!