Authors: Shelby Lane and Greta Beck
We see it all the time in the comments on our social media - “What are the benefits of hip thrusts?”/ “Are hip thrusts something I should be adding to my workouts?”.
The simple answer is YES! But of course, you’re here to find out why, so let me break it down for you!
Hip thrusts have become a popular exercise in recent years and for good reason. This compound exercise has numerous benefits for both men and women, making it a great addition to any workout routine.
But what exactly makes hip thrusts so effective? I break it down for you below…
Hip Thrust can be done off a bench, couch, or exercise ball!
Hip thrusts are particularly effective for glute activation and development due to their ability to isolate and target the gluteus maximus muscle.
One reason for this is that hip thrusts place a greater emphasis on hip extension, which is the primary function of the gluteus maximus muscle.
Additionally, the movement pattern of the hip thrust allows for a more optimal length-tension relationship in the gluteus maximus muscle, which means that the muscle is able to contract more forcefully and generate greater tension.
In simpler terms.. the hip thrust movement is highly targeted on the gluteus maximus and allows for a lot of glute activation!
So now we know why hip thrusts are effective, but what are the benefits? (Spoiler: there’s more than you think!)
One of the most obvious benefits of hip thrusts is that they target the glutes, which are one of the largest muscle groups in the body. The glutes play a critical role in many daily activities such as walking, running, and jumping, so strengthening them can help improve overall fitness and athletic performance. The hip thrust is particularly effective for activating the glutes as it isolates and targets them directly, leading to greater muscle activation and growth over time.
Hip mobility is important for overall joint health and can help improve athletic performance and reduce the risk of injury. Hip thrusts work the muscles that help to extend the hips, which can help improve hip mobility over time. This is particularly beneficial for individuals who spend a lot of time sitting, which can lead to tight hips and reduced mobility.
Hip thrusts not only target the glutes, but also work the hamstrings, quadriceps, and your core. This makes the exercise a compound movement that engages multiple muscle groups simultaneously, leading to greater overall muscle development and strength. Additionally, by targeting multiple muscle groups, hip thrusts can help improve posture and overall body alignment.
Hip thrusts are a great exercise for improving strength and power, particularly in the lower body. As you increase the weight and intensity of the exercise, you'll develop greater strength in the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps, which can translate to improved athletic performance in activities such as sprinting, jumping, and weightlifting.
Weak glutes and hips can lead to a variety of injuries, including knee and lower back pain. By strengthening the glutes and hips with hip thrusts, you can help prevent these types of injuries and reduce the risk of future injury. Additionally, by improving hip mobility, hip thrusts can help reduce the risk of hip and lower back injuries.
In addition to the functional benefits of hip thrusts, they can also help improve the aesthetic appearance of the glutes. By increasing muscle mass and reducing body fat, hip thrusts can help give the glutes a firmer and more toned appearance!
A bonus benefit that I love about hip thrusts is that they are a versatile exercise that can be easily modified to increase or decrease the level of difficulty. For example, you can vary the tempo of the exercise, or add in pauses or pulses to increase the time under tension and enhance muscle activation as well as do variations like B-Stance, Single leg, and frog stance hip thrust to get even more glute activation!
Single Leg Hip Thrust
So now you understand why hip thrusts are effective and the benefits, but we still haven’t got to the main question of the day, which is how are people actually doing hip thrusts comfortably?
When hip thrusts were first introduced, you mainly saw people doing it with a barbell, which would leave really painful bruises and make the exercise very difficult. And if people didn’t have access to a barbell, then they would set a dumbbell on their lap which either pinched their skin or left bruises.
The Bellabooty Team
The Bellabooty Belt is the first and only patented hip thrust belt on the market. Featuring adjustable straps, the Bellabooty Belt allows users of any size of hips to use dumbbells, kettlebells, or plates when hip thrusting. Meaning you no longer need to go to the gym to find a barbell, you can now do them no matter where you are working out!Save Now On The Bellabooty Belt
One of the Co-Founders of Bellabooty, Shelby has a strong background in health, fitness instruction and personal training. Starting her career as a nurse, Shelby eventually transitioned into the health and wellness industry with a passion for keeping people out of the hospital. She’s been an instructor and trainer for global group fitness brands in addition to having her own clients and developing online fitness programs. She also holds certifications in fitness, nutrition, and biomechanics that give her a unique perspective on both fitness and health.
You can follow Shelby on Instagram @shelbyroselane
As one of the Co-Founders of Bellabooty, Greta brings years of personal training and group fitness experience and as a certified pregnancy and postpartum fitness expert, Greta helps women in all stages of their lives find their way back to exercise, in a safe way. In addition to having years of experience as a personal trainer, she has also taught and designed hundreds of group fitness classes built around her two main training philosophy pillars - strength and mobility.