A Bootyful Behind: The Most Effective Moves for a Better Bum

Did you guys know that there is a day dedicated to butts? That’s right! Butt Appreciation Day is actually a thing.

So I feel like it is only appropriate that WE take some time to appreciate butts. Flat Butts. Large Butts. Perky Butts. Small Butts. All of them!

With the right workouts to effectively target your glutes and hamstrings, and with good recovery (don’t forget the protein!), you can build the behind you’ve always dreamed of.

Here’s my list of the 12 most effective booty exercises to help you tone, shape, lift, and firm up your butt! Check out the videos of me and my friend Trainer Lindsey for demonstrations.

12 of the Most Effective Moves for a Better Behind

1. Barbell Squats

Squats are one of my favs because they work your whole body! They tighten your bum, target your quads and hammies and engage your abs for core stabilization.

What to do: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart or a little wider and place your hands on the bar. Get under the bar, and then adjust your hold if necessary. Keep your chest up, and unrack the bar. Squat down keeping your head facing forward and your back slightly arched. Lower down until your thighs are parallel to the floor, with your knees over your ankles. Push through your heels to go back to starting position. Repeat.


What to do: Go in tabletop position with your hands shoulder-width apart and with your hips directly over your knees. Keep your left knee bent at 90 degrees, flex your left foot and lift knee to hip level. Lower knee down without touching the floor. And lift back up. Repeat as many times as desired. Then switch legs and repeat.


What to do: Stand shoulder-width apart or a little wider. Squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor and keep your knees over your ankles. Engage your core and then jump in the air, on landing lower back into the squat position. That’s one rep. Repeat.

4. Booty Werkkkkkk

Booty werkkkkkk

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I don’t know what the technical term for this one is so I like to refer to it as booty werkkkkkk…. Cause it really does work that behind.

What to do: Plant your right leg on a bench and start with your left leg on the floor. Keeping your right leg planted, and bent the entire time, move your left leg behind your right and position it on the other side of the bench. Step your toes down quickly and then return to the other side. Repeat. Then switch legs.


What to do: Begin with your feet staggered with your right foot in front of your left foot with your knees slightly bent. Lower into a lunge position with your right knee over your ankle, engage your core and push off of the bottom of your feet and jump up off the floor. In mid-air switch the position of your feet so now your left knee will be positioned in front of the right, and land in a lunge. That’s one rep. Repeat.


What to do: This is similar to a regular squat except for the placement of your feet. Stand with your feet slightly more than shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed out at a 45-degree angle. Squat down keeping your abs engaged. Squeeze glutes and return to starting position. That’s one rep. Repeat. (Check out video in link)

7. Stiff Leg Deadlifts

Stiff leg dead lift from platform for full range! Hello Hammies & Glutes.

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What to do: Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart. Grasp a bar at shoulder-width using an overhand grip (with desired weight). Keep a slight bend in your knees and keep your torso straight. Lower the bar over the top of your feet by bending at the waist until you feel a stretch. Then bring your torso back up by extending your hips to go back to starting position. And remember to keep your back straight throughout the exercise. That’s one rep. Repeat.


What to do: Lie on your back with your knees bent at 90 degrees with your feet flat on the floor. Extend one leg. Squeeze your glutes and push your hips up off the floor as high as you can. Pause, and lower your butt until it is hovers above the floor (do not let it touch down). Push your hips back up towards the ceiling. Repeat as many times as desired. Then switch legs and repeat.


What to do: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, drop into a quarter squat and then extend off of your hips and explode up to propel yourself onto the box. Make sure when you land, your back doesn’t round over. Step up fully, and then step back off the box. That’s one rep. Repeat. (Check out video in link)

10. Band Duck Walk

You’ll really feel this one!

What to do: Get a resistance band and place the band around both legs, just above each ankle. Begin with your feet together, standing in upright position with your knees slightly bent. Keeping your left leg planted, move your right leg and place it wider than shoulder-width apart and squat down. As you rise back up bring your left leg to meet your right leg. Then repeat with your left leg. That’s one rep.

11. Step-Up Kick-Backs

What to do: In this video, Trainer Lindsey shows us a step-up without a kickback. To work your glutes even better though, kick back with the opposite leg you stepped up with right at the high point of your step up. Keep your right leg planted on a step and your left leg on the floor with the weight on the ball of the back foot. Start in a lunge position, then step it up putting all of the weight on the right foot and kick your left leg back. Lunge back down. Repeat.

12. Curtsy Lunges

Curtsy lunges for the booty!

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What to do: Stand with your legs hip-width apart. Keeping your hips square, step your right leg diagonally behind you and lower both knees to a 90-degree angle. Remember: Not to let your knees go past your toes. Go back to start and then repeat on the opposite side. That’s one rep. For more of a challenge add weights.

Blast that Booty!

Everyone wants that perfect booty. Just think of all the songs written about them!

From “Baby Got Back” by Sir Mix-a-Lot to “Bootylicious” by Destiny’s Child. Not to mention the endless dance moves that go along with these iconic songs, that make it hardly impossible not to “Drop it like it’s hot” or “Shake whatcha mama gave ya.”

But not all of us were born with that perfect, round, perky butt. That’s why we turn to squats and other booty enhancing workouts… cause I mean #bootygains.

Don’t be frightened by how much your booty will be burning after these workouts! If you follow me on social you know that I love to do quick but EFFECTIVE workouts, to get the biggest burn in a short amount of time.

Incorporating these exercises into my workouts has helped me to see the results that I want and to grow that peach.

I know they can work for you too!

And when it comes to getting results, your recovery is just as important as your workout. Don’t forget to fuel your hard work in the gym, so you can recovery properly, build that booty, and see real results!

Karina Elle

Karina Elle

Fitness Model

Karina Elle is a professional fitness model and creator of the 6 Week Fit Model Fitness Challenge.

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