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As we get older, staying active and keeping our muscles strong is essential. And let’s face it; strong glutes are not just for the young and fabulous – they can help improve balance and stability, reduce the risk of falls, and make daily activities a breeze. But why are the glutes often so inactive, especially as we age?
Several reasons could include a sedentary lifestyle, poor posture, and even certain medications. That’s why it’s important to incorporate exercises that target the glutes into our workouts.
These exercises can be done while standing or seated, depending on your fitness level and comfort. Just remember to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new exercise routine.
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What is Glute Activation?
Glute activation refers to the process of waking up and activating the glute muscles before a workout. This is important because the glutes are often inactive due to prolonged sitting or poor posture, and activating them can help improve their function and strength.
Do you have weak glutes?
Here’s how you can tell if your glutes need a bit of tightening up:
- Difficulty standing on one leg
- If you have pain or general discomfort in your lower back or knees.
- Poor posture
- Is it hard for you to climb stairs or get up from your chair after watching an episode of The Queen? It could be weak glutes.
If you are an older adult experiencing any of these issues, it is always best to check in with your PT or MD. Weak glutes can contribute to a decrease in balance and stability, increasing the risk of falls for seniors.
Exercises for Weak Glutes
Strengthening the glutes can help improve balance and stability, reduce the risk of falls, and make daily activities easier. Your healthcare professional can recommend specific exercises and stretches to help improve the function and strength of your glutes.
Exercise 1: Glute Bridges With Hand Support
- Lie on your bed or floor (a bed is better if you have difficulty getting on the floor). Again, ensure your knees are bent at about 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor.
- Lift your hips off the ground, using your hands to help push your hips up if needed
- Slowly lower your hips back down to the bed or floor and repeat for 10-15 reps.
Exercise 2: Reverse Lunges with Toe Taps
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Take a step back and tap your toes on the ground instead of lowering down into a lunge
- Repeat with the other leg
Exercise 3: Partial Squats
- Stand in front of a chair or countertop with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Lower your body down as if you are sitting back in the chair
- Keep your chest lifted and your weight in your heels as you push back up to the starting position
Exercise 4: Seated Marches with Resistance Band
- Engage your core muscles by contracting your abdominal muscles. Sit up tall in a chair with both feet flat on the floor with both ends wrapped around each ankle.
- As you lift one leg off the ground, keep your knee bent and engage the muscles on the outer part of the leg. This will create tension in the exercise band.
- Lower your leg back down to the starting position and repeat with the other leg.
With consistency and proper form, these exercises can help you strengthen your glutes and improve your overall health and wellness. Remember to warm up before starting any exercise routine and to listen to your body. Stop the exercise and consult a healthcare professional if you feel pain or discomfort.