Total Shape is a reader-supported site. Purchases made through links may earn a commission. Learn more.

How To Build a Bigger Butt (Do These 6 Crucial Exercises)

Tracy Thompson
Published by Tracy Thompson
Fact checked by Donald Christman, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: May 5, 2022

One of the most common questions asked by many women (and some men) as they go about their program is how to build a bigger butt fast.

Whether you've been genetically cursed with a flat butt or simply want to increase this area's tone and muscle definition, the great news is that the right glute exercises can certainly help.

Let's dive into our research-based guide and find out the right exercises to target this area, how to structure your nutrition protocol to meet your butt-building needs, and how to be patient as the process unfolds and you build muscle.

Summary of the Key Findings:

  • Three most important things in building a bigger butt are diet, progressive overload, and rest.
  • Discover 8 butt building exercises which recruit the largest muscle fibers found in your glutes.
  • When building a bigger bum, what you eat and which supplements you use is also important.

Reasons to Build a Bigger Butt

woman wearing leggings and showing her butt size

Remember, building a bigger gluteus maximus and gluteus medius isn’t just about aesthetics. Building a bigger booty also adds functional strength as well.

  • Functional Strength - Your glute muscles are going to give you strength whenever you’re climbing a flight of stairs, squatting down to pick up something heavy, or simply walking throughout your day to day life.
  • Stability - The stronger your glute muscles are, the more stabilized you’ll be as they can also improve balance and agility as well.
  • Reduce lower back injuries - a strong butt may also keep your spinal column in proper alignment, reducing the risk of lower back injuries (1).

Fundamentals of Building a Bigger Butt

woman using a tape measure on her butt

Building a bigger bum requires three main things: a healthy diet, progressive overload in your exercises, and rest.

  • Diet - No amount of butt exercises will get you to your big bubble butt dreams unless you watch your eating habits.You’ll need to grow your glutes while also slimming down on fat to get that toned look.
  • Progressive Overload - Increase the volume or intensity of your exercises. By consistently pushing on your weight limit and stamina, you’ll blast through plateaus and grow muscle quickly.
  • Rest - Your body builds muscle between exercises. If you overtrain or don’t leave enough time between exercises, you not only risk strain or injury, but your body also won’t have time or energy to gain the muscle you’re working towards.

The Best Butt Building Exercises

When it comes to strength training for your booty building plan, you’ll want to focus on exercises that, for the most part, recruit the largest muscle fibers possible within your glutes.

Here are the top moves that will quickly help you build and bulk up your booty faster.

1. Squats

woman practicing squats at the gym

Squats activate every single muscle in the lower body and part of the upper body as well.

They're one of the best exercises if you want to naturally boost your testosterone.

To take your squat position further, you could get yourself a pair of women's weightlifting shoes.

You can do your squat exercises and workouts at home and there are so many squat variations that you'll never get bored of this exercise.

  1. To start this workout, get into an upright position, feet shoulder-width apart with a barbell across your back
  2. Unrack the barbell and take a deep breath in
  3. Bend the knees and slowly lower the body all the way down to the ground, going as low as possible. Keep the back upright and core tight. This movement activates your glutes eccentrically.
  4. Pause at the very bottom and then press up to a full standing starting position while exhaling to complete your rep

2. Deadlifts

woman lifting a barbell

Next up on the workout list for bigger bum is deadlifts.

Stiff-leg or traditional deadlifts are both great for working to get a bigger booty as well as targeting your lower back.

The primary difference between these butt exercises is that traditional deadlifts will also work your quads, while stiff-leg deadlifts work only your hamstrings and glutes.

  1. Position a barbell down by your feet in front of you
  2. Make sure to stand in an upright position, feet hip width apart
  3. Bend over and grasp the barbell using an overhand grip. Knees should be slightly bent
  4. Keeping the back straight, lift the barbell up off the floor while squeezing your glutes until you come to a full standing position
  5. Pause and then lower the barbell down to the ground to complete the rep

Tip: Weightlifting belt can help improve your core and stabilize your spine, allowing you to lift heavier.

3. Lunges

woman in a lunge position at the gym

Lunges are another excellent booty building workout.

These can be walking lunges, stationary lunges, or reverse lunges.

To really target your booty, you’ll want to place the weight across the back (rather than holding them down by your sides).

These are also great for your adductors.

  1. Hold a barbell across your back and then assume an upright standing position
  2. Step right foot forward and then begin to bend the knee as you lower yourself down into the ground
  3. Pause when you’re almost at the ground and then press up to your starting position to complete the rep, bringing the left leg forward and stepping it in front of you
  4. Now repeat this process, this time to the other side (alternate right and left leg).

4. Split Squats

Woman doing split squats

Split squats are another terrific lower body, booty building workout to include in your program for better glute and leg muscle growth.

To get the most out of this workout, lace a dumbbell across your back for this one and think of pushing up through the heel.

  1. Stand in front of a flat bench and place one leg back on top of that bench, bending the knee as you do
  2. Keeping the back upright, bend the supportive leg as you lunge down and squeeze your glutes. The back knee should almost touch the ground.
  3. Pause in this position and then press up to complete the rep. Perform all reps to one side and then switch sides and repeat.

5. Glute Raises

woman working out her glutes

A hip thrust or glute raise isn't quite as compound as the previous moves, so they will isolate the glutes better (while also still slightly working the hamstrings).

This workout can be done with weights (often referred to as hip thrusts) or without (aka glute bridge or raise) across your lap depending on your own individual strength level.

  1. Sit on the ground with your back against a flat bench, arms placed up on either side of it, knees bent, and feet flat on the floor in front of you, hip width apart.
  2. Thinking of squeezing the glutes muscles, press the hips up until they are in straight alignment. The key is a complete hip range of motion, so make sure your hips are in the right form.
  3. Pause here and then lower your hips down to the ground to complete the rep

6. Romanian Deadlifts

woman practicing deadlifts

To target your posterior chain (hamstrings, glutes, and back) – the Romanian deadlift is the perfect workout.

It targets your legs and glutes instead of your back.

To start, you’ll need a weight bar. You can add weights or just use the bar.

  1. Hold the bar by your hips. Your arms should be extended and palms facing down. Stand straight with your back arched, knees bent, and feet hip width apart.
  2. Make sure to slowly lower the bar by moving your hips back as far as you can as you control your glutes, keeping the bar close to your body.
  3. To do the full range of motion, you should feel yourself no longer able to bend your hamstrings (the muscles on the backs of your legs). Going beyond this point doesn’t gain your glutes.
  4. Pause here, then return to starting by moving your hips forward to stand straight.

7. Butt Blaster

woman in a butt blaster position

Resistance band butt blaster (also called the donkey kicks) is a unique way to strengthen your hamstrings and glutes without putting your weight on your knees.

Donkey kicks can also be done with a leg curler machine or no resistance band at all.

Donkey kicks also activate the gluteus medius, a muscle deep to the gluteus maximus that works to abduct the hip.

  1. Start by kneeling on the floor. Wrap your resistance band under your right foot, and hold the handle by placing your hands straight under your shoulders.
  2. Keeping your back straight, raise your right knee and push your foot back to extend the band. Focus on squeezing your glutes in this motion.
  3. Pause here, then return by slowly bending your knee back into the starting position. Finish your repetitions with one foot, then switch.

How To Create Big Butt Workout Plan

Now that you know all the main exercises to perform to get a bigger booty, let’s talk about how to structure these butt exercises for an effective bigger bum workout routine program.

Let’s give you a few gluteus maximus and gluteus medius building protocols.

Day 1 - Workout A

  • Squats - 3 sets of 8 repetition, 120 seconds pause in between (best to try out the different variations, ie lower bar squat this week, single leg the next, and so on)
  • Romanian Deadlifts - 3 sets of 10 repetition, 120 seconds pause in between
  • Glute Bridges/Hip thrust exercises - 4 sets of 12 reps, 120 seconds pause in between

Day 2 - Rest

Day 3 - Rest

Day 4 - Workout B

  • Deadlifts - 3 sets of 6 repetition, 180 seconds rest in between
  • Walking Lunges - 3 sets of 8-10 reps, 120 seconds rest in between
  • Split Squats - 3 sets of 12 reps, 90 seconds rest in between
  • Butt Blaster - 3 sets of 15 reps, 60 seconds rest in between

Day 5 - Rest

Day 6 - Rest

Day 7 - Rest

Advance Training Tips

1. Rep Ranges

Volume of training (number of sets x repetitions) is more important than frequency per week.
- Candow and Burke, International Journal of Exercise Science Authors

For heavy compound exercises, the optimal muscle growth results come from a rep range of 8-12. This will also help kick-start your metabolic rate, allowing fat burning to take place.

For the isolation moves such as glute raises and clamshells, challenge yourself to take this rep range up to 15-20.

2. Rest Between Sets

Allow 30-60 seconds between each routine to keep your heart rate up and ensure that you are developing the level of muscle fatigue necessary to challenge the body and promote optimal progress.

3. Frequency

You should be targeting your bum at least twice per week or every 3-4 days to see results. More than that might prevent your body from fully repairing and building new muscle.

It’s during this recovery phase that you are growing stronger and gaining that shape to the muscle you want.

4. Good Form

Good form is essential to strength training. At best, bad form targets the wrong muscle groups. At worst, it can cause strain or injury

Between each rep, be sure that you’re keeping good form by fixing your posture and adjusting the difficulty if need be.

When doing bum building exercises - focus on squeezing the glutes and you will get better results in terms of muscle growth.

A personal trainer can help you improve your form during the training process and provide alternative exercises if you have health or range of movement limitations.

Diet to Help Increase Butt Size

salad greens in a bowl

First, determine your goal for your buttocks.

  • If weight loss is your goal, you need to eat at a calorie deficit. This means you should consume fewer calories than you burn off over the course of the day.
  • If you need to add more size to your booty, you need to eat in a calorie surplus, which will provide the additional energy needed for your body to sculpt your bottom.

As a general guideline:

  • If you need to lose extra pounds, aim to consume about 12-14 calories per pound of current weight.
  • If you need to build your booty, aim to consume around 16-18 calories per pound of current weight.

Even if your goal is to gain weight, this doesn’t mean you should be eating unhealthy foods.

If you put high quality foods into your body, you’ll get high quality results, meaning you’ll gain muscle, not body fat.

  • Protein - Use a healthy diet that’s well balanced in lean proteins like chicken, fish, lean beef, egg whites, and whey protein powder
  • Carbs - Go for complex carbohydrates like oats, sweet potatoes, brown rice, beans, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Healthy Fats - These healthy fats should be used in moderation and should include olive oil, nuts and seeds, nut butter, avocado, and fatty varieties of fish.

If you track your calories and strive for a good balance between the two nutrients, you can be rest assured that you are providing what your body needs, nutritionally speaking, to build a bigger bum. Learn additional tips here by watching this video:

youtube

Supplements

scoop of protein powder and a stack of capsules

Supplements aren’t 100% necessary for muscle building – but if you have any doubt that you’re not getting enough protein a day, or feel that you’re lagging in your exercises, supplements can help give you the leg-up you need.

1. Protein

Many girls think that drinking protein powder will make them big and bulky, but this is really not the case.

Getting sufficient protein is essential for building muscle.

But getting enough protein from real food can be a pain so I like to opt for protein powders (or protein bars) as they're very convenient and easy. I can get 20g+ of protein in one easy hit.

2. Pre-Workout Supplements

Pre-workout supplements for women focus on making your body fully prepared to make the most of your gym time. Your body needs to have energy available, be able to provide increased blood flow, and fight lactic acid build-up.

3. Creatine

Creatine is a naturally occurring substance in the body. Taking this supplement boosts the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) – which helps your body contract muscles.

When combined with heavy resistance training leads to enhanced physical performance, fat free mass, and muscle morphology.

 

Additional Tips

woman chugging water and another in bed

1. Sleep at Least 7 Hours

No amount of supplements can make up for lack of sleep.

Enough sleep is important for optimal body function – but it’s also when the body repairs muscles.

2. Wear High-Waisted Pants/Shorts

Wearing higher-waisted pants or shorts to the gym gives your bum a nice shape, and it might help you keep your back straight during exercises too.

3. Drink a Lot of Water

Keeping hydrated keeps you energized, and helps you sweat which keeps your body regulated during exercise.

Post-workout, it helps your muscles repair and flushes out toxins getting in the way between you and your dream booty.

FAQs

How Much Time Will It Take for My Buttock to Get Larger?

It should take you around three weeks for your buttocks to get larger if you follow our tips. Of course, this might vary based on your diet and exercise routine.

Is It Possible to Get a Bigger Bum in a Week?

No, it's not possible to get a bigger bum in a week. It takes at least three weeks for glute muscles to grow with constant effort.

Can I Get Bigger Buttocks Fast Without Exercise?

No, you can't get bigger buttocks fast without exercise, unless there’s plastic surgery involved.

The Bottom Line

So there you have your complete guide on how to build a big booty and stronger glutes.

Depending on where you are starting, expect it to take 4-8 weeks of consistent effort before you start noticing changes taking place.

If you work hard though, you’ll notice your bum is looking bigger, feeling harder, and you’ll gain functional strength in your lower body as well, especially your legs.

Was this article helpful?

About The Author