Lower Body Resistance Band Activation Exercises
In previous blog posts I have spoken about improving your running and injury prevention through certain exercises. Now I want to talk to you about the importance of glute activation exercises. You may have heard trainers use the term “fire up the glutes”, well this is because the glutes basically go dormant throughout the day due to sitting for long periods etc. When we are moving we are not technically activating them as to activate the glutes we need to contract the glute muscles. ( see my activation test below)
We need good strong glutes not only for running but for basic everyday movements of life. Injury and lower back pain can be another cause of inactive glutes. When a person is injured, their body mechanics can change. This can lead to some muscles working overtime, while others, like the glutes do the opposite. Very active people like runners can have inactive glutes from working at a desk all day and then heading straight out for a run without doing activating exercises.
How to Activate?
Stand facing a wall and place you hands on the wall
Lift your right leg behind you without bending the knee
Purposely squeeze your glute at the top then lower your leg back down
Try it again without squeezing the glute (this shows you when you are not activating the glute).
See the difference between active and inactive? good ;)
Improve your overall fitness by activating the glutes
Below are a few lower body and glute activation exercises - essential pre run or pre weights. First 2 can be used as warm up movements. We are focusing on keeping tension on the band the whole time, ensure you squeeze the glutes. These moves really get the glutes & legs fired up. Search my website for previous blog posts on this topic with more resistance band exercises to incoporate into your fitness routine.
1. Jumping Jacks 60 seconds
2.Jump Squat 60 seconds
3. Standing glute kicks X 20 each side (hold something for stability if needed) .
4. Quarter squat side step X20 each leg
5. Fire hydrant + bird dog X 20 each side
6. Side shuffle ( keep distance between legs) X 10
7. Quarter squat + calf raises X 20