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Updated on November 6, 2016
Kevin McClernon profile image

A retired Marine, Kevin incorporates all components of physical fitness to improve the strength and conditioning of men and women alike.

Athletes have some of the shapeliest and toned backsides on the planet. Build your own killer booty with these athletic drills and exercises!


The Building of an Athletic Butt

This series will focus on athletic drills and workouts which will develop powerful glutes and, in turn, an aesthetically appealing toned derriere. Part 1 of the series will provide a series overview plus glute-specific exercises and stretches.

Stop thinking and worrying about your backside! Athletes are not concerned about their butts; they’re focused on beating the competition. Their objective is on improved performance; therefore their workouts are designed to “better their game”. A very favorable consequence of their actions is the development of a phenomenal rump. Follow what they do and you’ll better both your game and your caboose.

The glutes are best activated by power and speed movements; such as dashing and jumping. Explosive sporting events such as long and triple jumping, pole vaulting, sprinting, tennis and volleyball rely heavily on powerful glutes. Therefore conditioning drills and workouts presented throughout this series will highlight the general physical fitness activities common in the development of athletes in those sports and events.

Having super strong glutes is a prerequisite for success in speed and power events. Bodybuilders talk about “glute day or “squat day”, for these athletes, every day is glute day! This is not marathon training, I am not talking about endless daily training sessions. High and round buttocks are the result of quick, explosive actions. Work the movements and the booty will follow.

Building an athletic butt won’t be the result of 1 thought, nor 1 attempt, nor 1 workout. Most athletes have been practicing their chosen sport for a considerable length of time. But that’s no reason to give up before you start. Like any worthwhile endeavor, improvement and success will come – if you put in the time and effort. As with most physical training, visible results take 6 weeks for starters with considerable progress noticed in a year. So take you “before” selfie today, track your progress, and see how it compares to next summer’s bikini pics.


Keys to Success

The biggest key to achieving a round, tight end is doing not thinking. I’m not implying that you should go about training in an ad hoc, mindless manner. By all means get educated about training in general and the specifics about glute activation and healthy nutritional habits. Also find what motivates you, use it to your advantage, and go to work. Potential energy is defined as the energy possessed by a body. Think of it as your abilities or what you can do. Kinetic energy is the energy a body possesses by being in motion. Think of this as actually using your abilities to develop skills and, in the case of this article, your glutes. In order to get that bombshell booty, you energy needs to be of the kinetic type!

Dedication and persistence towards physical fitness and sound nutritional habits is what divides fit individuals from the sedentary population. Persistence isn’t a marathon endeavor; it’s a continual sequence of short term challenges to overcome; getting your daily workout in and packing your lunch inside of going to the most convenient fast food joint. Don’t get discouraged or lazy - - your athletic derriere depends or your dedication and persistence. Stay focused; eat healthy, follow the athletic routines and the results will come.

Physical fitness is not a gift. One thing this series can not improve is a lack of motivation and/or persistence. Your level of fitness is perishable…it is a use it or loss it deal. It must be done by you; no one can get in shape for you. Improvement requires work and perseverance...but the reward is great…a fit and healthy body with enviable buttocks capable of accomplishing things that your sedentary self could not.

I want to help you develop a talk-of –the-town athletic butt you're proud of!


General Warm-up

Often overlooked, the warm-up is an essential portion of an effective training plan. The general warm-up is not glute-specific but provides many benefits. The warm-up raises the core body temperature, increases heart rate and circulation of blood and oxygen to muscles, prepares the body for strenuous activity and reduces the risk of injury. Get into the habit of starting each training session by warming up.

Butt Kicks: Bend one leg at the knee, trying to get the heel as close to the butt as possible, raising opposite arm at same time. Bring the same leg back to the ground and arm back to your side. Repeat on the opposite side. (Jogging variant pictured.)

Curl & Press: Curl your hands up to your shoulders. Press your arms overhead until your arms are straight. Reverse the movements backwards until you have your hands at your sides.

Heel Raises: Rock forward to the ball of your feet lift the heels from the ground. Return the heel to the ground and repeat.

Hi Jack Hi Jill: With arms straight at your sides, lift 1 arm overhead keeping the arm straight. Lower the arm back to your side and repeat on the other side.

Partial Squats: Stand with feet shoulder width apart, back straight, arms on you upper quads. Keeping you heels on the ground, partially squat until hands touch your knees. Return to the starting position.

Truck Bends: Standing with feet shoulder width apart, and hands on hips. Lean backwards then bend forward to a point where your head in level with your waist.

5 minutes
20 seconds
Heel Raise
Butt Kick
Partial Squat
Truck Bends
Hi Jack Hi Jill
Curl & Press
Jumping Jacks

Glute-specific Exercises and Stretches

No equipment is necessary to complete the provided exercises and stretches.

These exercises may be conducted as part of a scheduled workout, as a second workout, or divided up and done as time permits during the day.

Glute-specific Warm-up

Unlike the general warm-up, the specific warm-up targets the primary muscles to be used during the workout's vigorous activities.

Air Squat: Start standing upright with feet shoulder width apart. Squat dropping the butt straight down keeping the chest as vertical as possible and feet flat on the ground. Think about pushing the whole foot into the ground as you return to the starting position. Additionally, by keeping your head straight, focusing on a distant object, will help to keep your back straight throughout the exercise.

Back Extension: Starting by lying on the stomach with hands behind the head. Simultaneously raise the upper torso and legs off the ground. Hold them off the ground for a moment then return to the starting position.

Bird Dog: Start on your hands and knees, "all fours". Extend your right arm straight out and left leg straight back. Hold for the designated amount of time and return to "all fours". Repeat with the left arm and right leg.

Donkey Kicks: Start on "all fours". Kick the left leg back and up straightening the knee. Bring the leg back, bending the knee and hip bringing the knee into the chest. Repeat with the right leg.

Fire Hydrant aka Dirty Dog: Start on "all fours". Raise your left leg to the side, keeping the knee bent. Hold at the apex for a moment then return the leg to the starting position. Repeat on the opposite side.

Reverse Flutter Kick: Start by lying on your stomach. Keeping the leg straight, lift your left leg off the ground while the right leg remains on the ground. Lower your leg to the ground and repeat on the opposite side.

Reverse Lunge: Start standing upright with feet hip width apart. Step back with one leg dropping the hips until they reach a 90 degree bend of the front knee with the front foot flat, knee behind the toe, and chest up. Stand up using the forward leg and return to the starting position. Repeat using the opposite leg.

Side Leg Raise: Start by lying on your left side;left knee bent, right leg extended with your toes on the right foot pointing forward. Keeping your right leg straight, raise it approximately 2 feet from the ground keeping your toes facing forward. Return your right leg to the ground and repeat for the designated amount of repetitions.Switch over and repeat on the opposite side.

Air Squat
Bird Dog
10 seconds each side
Fire Hydrant
3-5 each side
Reverse Flutter Kicks
3-5 each side
Back Extension
Donkey Kicks
3-5 each side
Side Leg Raises
3-5 each side
10 seconds
Reverse Lunge
3-5 each side

Glute-specific Warm-up

Glute-specific Bodyweight Workout

The same exercises used for the glute-specific warm-up may also be used as a glute-specific bodyweight workout. Use several of these exercises as a stand-alone workout or to augment other calisthenics or a weight training routine. This workout should not be used on days in which athletic drills are being conducted. Also, do not overdo it and cause undue fatigue. Remember, the glutes respond best to speed and power movements and excess repetitions will be detrimental in achieving the end-state of a toned derriere.

Air Squat
Bird Dog
5-10 seconds each side
Fire Hydrant
5-10 each side
Reverse Flutter Kick
5-10 each side
Back Extension
Donkey Kick
5-10 each side
Side Leg Raise
5-10 each side
20-60 seconds
Reverse Lunge
5-10 each side

Glute-specific Bodyweight Workout

Glute-specific Stretches

Athletic training exposes the body to a significant amount of physical stress which could lead to injury. Remaining flexible is key to reducing the risk of injury while improving overall performance. Flexibility is a key ingredient in speed and power production. The physical fitness components of speed and power are the what drives glute development.

The bottom line; if you are looking to shape your rear, you need to strive to maximize your power production. Maximal power production relies on flexibility. You might want a tight booty, but you don't want your glutes to be tight. Getting and staying flexible will pay dividends in the development of your athletic butt. Include these stretches in your cool-down routine on all days in which you conduct athletic drills or the glute-specific bodyweight workout. Hold each stretch for 15-30 seconds.

Seated Figure 4 Stretch: Sit upright on a chair or bench. Place one ankle just above the knee of the opposite leg. Lightly press down on the folded leg's knee and lean forward. Repeat on the opposite leg.

Standing Figure 4 Stretch: Stand upright placing one ankle just above the knee of the opposite leg. Slightly bend the supporting knee and slightly lean forward. Repeat on the opposite leg.

Supine Back Stretch: Lie flat on your back with both legs extended. Keeping one leg extended, bend the knee of the opposite leg bringing it towards the chest. Slowly pull it towards you with both hands. Remain the leg to the extended position and repeat with the opposite leg. After each leg was completed singularly, stretch them both simultaneously.

Basic Athletic Drills


Athletes are defined by their ability to move. Great power athletes move quicker, jump higher and longer than their opponents, not to mention the average human being. Most people to not develop and benefit from powerful glute muscles, but power athletes need them to succeed at their chosen sports. They are key in producing explosiveness and speed. As previously stated; these athletes don't workout to obtain a high and round booty, they have an athletic butt as a consequence of their training.

The basic drills presented are introductory movements relating to acceleration, horizontal jumping and vertical leaping. These drills place much emphasis on glute activation and not sport-specific. They'll serve to prepare you for the sport-specific activities and workouts presented throughout the remainder of this series. All of the drills presented in this part will commence from the universal athletic position.

Acceleration is defined as an increase in the rate or speed. Acceleration drills are designed to assist in increasing initial explosiveness in order to reach maximum speed as quickly as possible. In addition to enhancing a basic athletic skill, you'll be doing a lot of tush toning.

Jumping or leaping are great activities to wake up your glutes! Jumping, be it horizontally or vertically, requires maximal explosiveness or propulsion. Your rear-end muscles form the base for these movements. Track & field's field event athletes and volleyball players developed their booty's by continually practicing their jumping abilities.


Universal Athletic Position: Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart and body weight balanced on both feet, which are flat on the ground. Lean forward while keeping your feet flat on the ground. Balance is maintained in this position by having the hips behind and the shoulders forward of the center of gravity..

10 meter Start: Shift your bodyweight to one foot while driving the opposite leg forward using a high knee action. Use forceful arm actions with the opposite arm forward of the driving leg. Using explosive arm and leg actions, attempt to get as fast as possible in 10 meters. Do not come to an abrupt stop, use 10-15 meters to decelerate. Rest 60-90 seconds and repeat, starting with the opposite leg to maintain muscle balance a symmetry.

Standing Broad Jump: Swing both arms back and slightly squat. Quickly bring the arms forward and simultaneously jump with both legs attempting to go as far as possible. Land with both feet and bend your knees to absorb the landing impact. Rest 30-60 seconds and repeat.

Vertical Jump: Swing both arms back and squat slightly. Rapidly bring the arms forward and overhead while simultaneously jumping with both legs attempting to go as high as possible. Land with both feet and bend your knees to absorb the landing impact. Rest 30-60 seconds and repeat.

Nutrition Basics

Proper nutrition is a basic prerequisite for maintaining a healthy body as well as improving and sustaining physical performance. Additionally, achieving and maintaining a satisfactory body composition, which plays greatly in getting a shapely derriere, is a result of combining sound nutritional and training habits.

Required caloric intake varies from athlete-to-athlete. Generally speaking, a 120 pound athlete requires approximately 2,200-2,500 calories daily. Approximately 55-65% of these calories should come from carbohydrates, 20-30% from fat, and 15-20% from protein.

I am neither a dietitian nor certified nutritional specialist so I will not be prescribing a daily eating plan or diet. What I will provide is a layman's guide of what not to eat in your efforts to maintain your health and fitness and develop the athletic butt you desire.

Beans & Nuts
Refried beans, salted nuts
Fruit drinks, soda, whole milk
Dairy Products
Regular cheese, whole milk
Butter, coconut oil, lard
Fruits & Vegetables
Canned fruits and vegetables, fried vegetables, sweetened fruits
Cake, cookies, donuts, snack crackers, sweetened cereal
Egg yolks, fast food, fried food, oil-packed fish, processed meats

Live A Fit Lifestyle...Your Butt Depends On It


The key is creating a plan you can follow as a lifestyle. Build time into your daily activities to get and stay fit. Stay committed to this lifestyle and you will maintain a fit, healthy body including a low percentage of body fat and an enviable tight end.

Keep checking back as I will continue writing the "How To Build An Athletic Butt" series. This part 1 of a 10-part series. Future articles will feature athletes and sport-specific activities to help boost your booty.

In the meantime, visit my profile page where you can find a collection of all my published workouts. Weekly, I provide advice and workouts that you can do nearly anywhere. These workouts are designed in similar fashion to the battle-tested techniques used by U.S. Marines and Special Operations Forces.

Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment with concerns, feedback or questions.

Until next time...stay fit and healthy...


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    • Kevin McClernon profile imageAUTHOR

      Kevin P McClernon 

      4 years ago from Dania Beach, Florida

      Thank you for the comments Cee-Jay. Get those warm-ups and cool-downs in!

    • Cee-Jay Aurinko profile image

      Cee-Jay Aurinko 

      4 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      Great post Kevin. You've listed some great exercises. I'm always too quick to skip warm ups, then regret it later. I never learn.


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