Glute bridges are the basic exercise we’ve all seen, maybe thanks to yoga, maybe from an unfortunate trip to the physical therapist, but then we assume it’s too basic to KEEP DOING.
BZZZZ wrong!! I’m not sure why we think basic is bad, but in this case it’s one of the best exercises runners can be doing to keep from having knee pain, IT Band pain or a host of other injuries.
I know it’s not as sexy as the squat, but listen you get to lay on the ground and get results. I mean that sounds like a great pre or post run moment to me.
What Does the Glute Bridge Do?
Glute bridge benefits are extensive, but specifically when it comes to running:
- Hip flexors get shorter from sitting which makes them tight, which pulls your pelvis forward. That leads to poor posture and weird running form.
- Activates all your core stabilizer muscles, those deep muscles for better form while running
- Activates your glutes, which can mean less knee pain because you hold your form better, also helps you run faster with that powerful muscle
- Can help with lower back pain
- Great at the end of a core workout to release the low back
Try adding bridges in to your dynamic warm up or do a set during any strength training workout.
Glute Bridge Variations
Per usual I like to make sure you know the why to help you stick with it. Now that we have that in place, which types of glute bridges are going to maximize results.
The truth is all of them work, but I love adding in variety because it helps me to feel it in different ways. In fact, the glute bridge march really fires up my core and is often part of my normal dynamic warm up now.
In the following video, I’ve demonstrated a variety of options for you.
You’ll see in this video that you can take the bridge to a variety of levels depending on where you are currently. A few variations I love:
- Small marching bridge (really feel the core)
- Big marching bridge (really practicing pelvis stabilization)
- Single leg glute bridge (more easily identify imbalances or weakness on one side)
- Glute bridge on the stability ball
If in doing these you notice one side is weaker, continue doing reps on both sides, but add a few more to the weak side. This will ensure you continue building strength, but give the weaker side a big more work.
What about the glute bridge vs hip thrust?
One of the reasons, I tend to stick to the glute bridge is that I find people can do it more correctly and thus engage the appropriate muscles. With the hip thrust, I see people doing all kinds of things that are going to hurt their lower back or just aren’t actually activating anything because they’re focused on hitting a certain weight.
Here’s a great video on how to do it correctly. When done right you are getting a definite booty building strength workout from those thrusters, while the glute bridge is doing to work on stabilizers and propel our runs…it may not be helping you to add a lot of muscle for that rounded bum.
That being said, I’m also a fan of a weighted bridge, which I didn’t include in the video. You can simply hold a weight on your pelvis, while engaging the core and glutes to raise up to a standard bridge and then slowly lower down.
How often do you include hip bridges in your workouts?
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