Lunges and squats are often referred to as the masters of lower body exercises. In addition to your legs, these functional, compound exercises also work your buttocks. However, poor form, a muscle imbalance, the consistent overload on your knees, and the repetitive motion, can make these exercises wreak havoc on your knees. Not to fear, you can still strengthen and shape your glutes with do-able, effective exercise that are easy on your knees.
Squeeze Your Tush
Butt squeezes don’t require fancy equipment, and are discreet, so they can be done pretty much anywhere, whether you’re watching TV, or waiting in line at the grocery store. Simply squeeze your butt cheeks together, and hold the isometric contraction for 10 seconds. Do eight to 12 reps, two to three times a day.
For variety, contract your butt while you walk; step forward with your right foot, and after your heel lands, squeeze your right butt cheek. Release the tension just before your toe lifts off the floor, and immediately repeat the exercise on your other side.
Mimic a Bridge
The bridge exercise effectively works your glutes, while also engaging your legs and calves. During this exercise you’re lying face up on the floor with your knees bent and your feet hip-width apart, flat on the floor. After engaging your abs, raise your hips, lifting your butt and lower back off the floor.
When your body is aligned from your knees to your shoulders, squeeze your buttocks for two seconds, and then slowly return to the starting point. Finish at least eight repetitions and two sets.