The Hip Extension Exercise has been recognized as one of the most targeted low intensity exercises for the butt. It almost completely concentrates on the glute muscles and also the lower back which is great for both lifting, firming and developing the butt. The only downside to this exercise is that it is relatively mild, you generally can’t place any weights on your feet thus most of the time you’ll be doing the exercise free-weight which might not be the best for butt muscle development.
Below is a great example of posture and style in which a hip extension should be done, pay particular attention to the piece of pipe between the trainer’s shoulders and butt, it is always suspended between his shoulders and his butt showing that the proper posture is to have your back arched downwards so that you can get the right level of extension for your legs.
Admittedly, the exercise looks quite easy and you may think that it isn’t the best exercise to build your butt. It’s also been tarnished by the fact that this exercise is used widely by the elderly or rehabilitating sick people, plainly because the exercise is just that good and effective at building both lower body strength and mobility. You would be wrong to dismiss this exercise, medical journals have established that this type of exercise is one of the most effective exercises to build strength in both your butt region and lower back.
Get down on your elbows (or hands) and knees, abs tight and back flat to maintain a good posture. Take one leg and kick it back as far as you can, imagine you’re kicking a dog behind you. Squeeze the butt to lift right leg until it’s level with hips then lower. Repeat for 12-16 reps before switching sides. You should be feeling a nice good burn at your butt and lower back muscles, if you don’t yet feel a burn increase the number of reps until you do.
Here lies the secret to this exercise, mind you because you are not using weights, your reps must be quite high, this does not mean that you should stop at 15-20, if you can still continue to do more, you should until you find it distinctly difficult to raise you leg for the final rep, it is this forced final rep that will bring the most effect to your exercise and you should never forget to push the limit for the best results. Remember, you must always feel great strain at the final rep then you have done a good set.
To properly benefit from this exercise you must understand that because you aren’t using any weights, you must perform a high number of reps. Being an exercise with high reps, it isn’t best suited to building mass rather its benefit is in adding tone to the butt and also effectively lifting the butt. Very few exercises can help in lifting the butt but hip extensions manage to do this because the exercise also calls into use the muscles of the lower back which will eventually tighten and pull the butt upwards. There-in lies the benefit to this exercise.
Remember to always squeeze your butt muscles when your legs are already extended, this give a very good burn, and is especially useful for people looking to add an extra perk to the butt. By constricting and squeezing at the very end of the rep, the muscle is forced to work when it is already at its smallest and tightest position, making it grow in girth and thus adding definition.