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8 lessons you can learn from Instagram girls when it comes to butt training

8 Lektionen, die Du von Instagram Girls in Sachen Po-Training lernen kannst

These Instagram butt models train smarter than you

How did they build that butt?

Instagram has become its own little microcosm. In this microcosm, there is a growing community of scantily clad, Instagram-famous girls, known in American as glute girls. You may already know this type of woman. But despite all the ridicule they get in response to their repetitive photos of their butts, they do know a thing or two about hypertrophy. And the average exerciser could benefit from this knowledge.

These women who have become famous on social media for their butt development have had to work hard for it. The butt is made of muscle. If these women were able to make it from members of the "no butt" team to internet celebrities famous for their butts, it begs the question, what are these women doing that others are not?

To find the answer, I did some research and asked around. The following is the way they build their butt and what we should consider if we want to do the same...with ANY muscle group.

1 - Balance is not a big deal for them

Balance is usually a good thing. We need a balance between work and leisure, a balanced budget and a balanced social life. However, when it comes to building a muscle group that is lagging behind in its development, balance is the last thing we need.

Glute girls don't just train their butts once a week. They train their gluteus several times a week. They work out their glutes at the gym, at work, at home, at the grocery store, at the gas station, at breakfast, at brunch, at lunch, after lunch, in the doctor's waiting room, during confession, in the shower, while shopping, before bed, and while they sleep.

Glute girls take tapes on vacation and start their day with a workout for their butt. That's the real story. That's how important it is to them.

A multiple Ms. Universe winner once said that she does a few hundred kickbacks every night with her legs extended with weight cuffs on her ankles - in addition to all the rest of her glute workouts during the week. She had an amazing butt.

Men often say they want to advance a muscle group that is lagging behind in its development and then perform a few extra sets for said muscle group once a week and think that's enough. Or maybe they dedicate an entire training day to that muscle group and believe that volume trumps everything else. Glute girls would just laugh wearily at something like that. Your efforts would be a joke to them. If you really want to bring a lagging muscle group up to speed, you have to give it a reason to grow and give it that reason often.

Remember that your body adapts. It doesn't know if you're at the gym and want to get sexy for the beach, or if you're doing physical labor. It simply adapts appropriately to the amount of work it has to do. If the amount of work is something he can handle right now, why would he grow?

If you have skinny little arms, do you really think a few sets of curls and one-arm tricep presses once a week is really going to change anything? Glute girls don't just walk into a gym and do two sets of hip thrusts once a week and think they're going to make a difference.

How many times a week do Glute Girls train their glutes and how much work do they put into each of these workouts? They dedicate at least two training sessions per week to high-volume gluteus training. That's the minimum for them. But three workouts per week is more common.

2 - You use "other" training days strategically

So they do a gluteus dominant high volume training session twice a week.

On the other days of the week, they perform band training or low-intensity systemic training.

Here's an interesting point about the "other days" where lower intensities with lower volume are used: these workouts aid muscle recovery. If you get sore muscles from an exercise and go to the gym the next day and do the same exercise again, the soreness tends to go away faster.

Pumping blood and nutrients into a damaged muscle speeds up the recovery process. Even though glute girls probably do the extra workout just for the sake of it, this lighter, less intense workout helps with recovery.

If you really want to get a lagging muscle group to grow, train it early and often. This means a minimum of twice a week, but weeks with higher frequency should be the rule rather than the exception.

3 - You use heavy basic exercises sparingly

Few things make me roll my eyes more than this whole "squat butt" mantra. When I asked them, not a single woman who really knew anything about the subject mentioned "squats" as the key factor in their gluteus development. Not one.

When I used to compete in powerlifting competitions, I saw a lot of squat butts. But believe it or not, you don't see many people with impressive gluteus development at powerlifting competitions. For the most part, powerlifting competitions are dominated by people who tend to have a flat butt.

If heavy squats and deadlifts were really responsible for developing impressive glutes, then powerlifting would be so full of bulging butts that you'd think Sir Mix A Lot would have used the 1992 IPF World Champions as inspiration for his title Baby Got Back.

Amazing gluteus development is the exception rather than the norm in powerlifting. And at the same time, I can go to any local competition in the bikini class and find seven hundred women with gluteus development that will make any butt built through heavy squats look pale.

"That's because one person is training for strength and the other for muscle development," some might now say.

Repeat this sentence ten times before you try to tell anyone that heavy squats and deadlifts are enough to maximize gluteus development. Then apply this knowledge effectively and understand that heavy squats and heavy deadlifts alone will most likely not give you an impressive butt.

How did the girls with excellent gluteus development use squats and deadlifts? With moderate to high repetitions. The lowest repetition range was 5 to 6 reps, but most used a range of 10 to 12 reps for 2 to 3 sets. These are bodybuilding sets and reps and not powerlifting sets and reps.

The other interesting part was that they didn't use much training volume on squat or deadlift variations. The volume they used for these exercises was moderate to low. That's right, they didn't focus their training on squats and deadlifts.

Focusing on heavy exercises with low repetitions is a very poor approach to targeting a muscle group that is lagging in its development. Not only that, Progressive Overload has a point of diminishing returns when it comes to muscle development - especially in the low repetition ranges where these abilities are largely determined by neural factors.

4 - You use an appropriate weight

Glute Girls find the perfect point when it comes to weight - a weight that generates a strong contraction of the target muscle group with each repetition. They avoid going past the point where the weight becomes too heavy to feel perfectly.

If you exceed this point, you are moving a weight that you can still handle, but you no longer feel the target muscles working. Sure, you're using a heavier weight, but the mind-muscle connection is lost.

You also train this way during basic exercises. To reiterate, progressively heavier weights are not the solution these women are using to advance the development of a muscle group.

5 - They emphasize the mind-muscle connection

If you are trying to bring a muscle group that is lagging behind in its development forward, you need to choose exercises where you can actually feel that muscle group doing the work. In general, the best exercises you can use are those that offer the opportunity to hold an isometric contraction at the highest point of the movement. This way you develop a strong mind-muscle connection.

And it's the mind-muscle connection that they all agreed is what ultimately makes the gluteus grow. How did they develop it? By achieving a strong contraction at the highest point of the movement over and over again during each training session.

So if you want to build your trapezius, it's not shoulder lifts with a 350 kilo barbell that will get you there. Rather, it's the shoulder lift with dumbbells, where you pause for 3 to 5 seconds at the highest point of each repetition and maintain a maximum contraction. These poor dumbbells with a strong contraction at the highest point of the movement will give you mass - not ultra heavy exercises with few repetitions.

6 - You train a muscle from different angles

Bodybuilders have said it time and time again for decades: fully developing a muscle requires a variety of exercises. This is another reason why squats and deadlifts are not enough for most people when it comes to developing the glutes.

Exercisers tend to get the most tension in the middle range of repetition in multi-joint exercises. And multi-joint exercises spread a large amount of tension across multiple joints and muscle groups, which is why they're so great for building an overall muscle base. But they do have their drawbacks when it comes to full muscle development and aesthetic appearance, as we naturally tend to favor and prefer to develop stronger muscles over time.

On the other hand, there are numerous isolation exercises that increase tension in a stretched or maximally contracted position of a repetition and allow us to place the tension where we want it.

The glute girls I've spoken to have confirmed that they use anything from four to eight different exercises during gluteus dominant workouts and that these exercises train the gluteus from every conceivable angle. For example, they use two exercises for the gluteus maximus where it is loaded at different lengths, then two exercises for the gluteus medius where it is loaded at different lengths and then two exercises with the same criteria for the gluteus minimus.

That's six exercises just for the gluteus. And you're only using bench presses to develop your chicken breast because you read somewhere that incline bench presses don't really target the upper chest and that bench presses are enough...which is the reason you have a chicken breast. Because to fully develop a muscle group, 99% of the time, one exercise won't be enough. Even two exercises don't seem to be enough when we talk about prioritizing a weak or small muscle group.

Therefore, use exercises that offer different resistance curves at different muscle lengths: in the mid-range, in the stretched state and in the contracted state.

7 - You are using progressive overload correctly

There is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to chasing after more weight on the bar for the purpose of muscle development, but there is a caveat. This mainly applies to low repetition ranges.

Progressive overload is very important for building more muscle mass, but using it correctly is at least as important. Here is a chart that shows a very good example of this:

Data collected at Hip Thrusts shows that at 50% of 1RM weight, the first repetition activates about 40% of the maximum voluntary isometric contraction or MIVC. In contrast, 90% of the 1RM activates about 50 to 60% of MVIC.

Considering that most people are able to perform between 15 and 20 repetitions with 50% of their 1RM weight, but only 3 repetitions with 90% of their 1RM weight, it shouldn't be hard to see which weight choice will give you the most bang for your buck when it comes to hypertrophy.

The Glute Girls are not training for maximum strength. They train for maximum development. They use progressive overload mainly in the medium (8 - 12) to high (15+) repetition range.

If you want to maximize your muscle development, performing sets of 3 to 5 reps with near-maximal weight will benefit your strength development more. Focus on breaking personal bests in the medium to high repetition range rather than setting new bests with your max weight.

8 - You're in it for the long haul

Even with all of this specialization, the women who have developed a butt that has helped them become famous on Instagram have had to consistently work for it for a long time. However, if you ask the average exerciser, they'll tell you that they can't build calves because mom and dad didn't gift them with the perfect genes.

What he doesn't mention is that his specialization consists of a few sets of calf raises at the end of a long leg training session once a week. Sure, the calves can be a stubborn muscle group, but you can't expect a stubborn muscle group to grow with a few sets once a week.

If you want bigger biceps, then you're going to have to put in the marathon type of work described above to finally achieve anything. Don't think that a few months will be enough. Be prepared to specialize for as long as it takes.

The summary

  • Use a weight that works the muscles, not just makes the weight move.
  • Use progressive overload in the medium to high repetition range.
  • Use exercises that load the muscle from different angles.
  • Use metabolic stress to drive most of your workouts.
  • Train the muscle at least twice a week.
  • Invest a few years of this to bring a lagging muscle group up to the level of development of your legal body.

By Paul Carter


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