Above is a video by Bret Contreras. He demonstrates how to perform the hip thrust correctly.
The four primary reasons one should perform hip thrusts include:
- Improve the size, strength, and appearance of the glutes
- Increase acceleration and sprint speed
- Increase bottom squat and deadlift lockout power
- Improve the functioning of the entire body since the glutes influence foot, ankle, knee, hip, pelvic, and low back mechanics
The best ways in which we can load the hip thrust are as follows:
- Sandbag/Chain/Kettlebell/DB (chain variation shown)
- Single-Leg Variations
- Shoulder and Feet Elevated Variations
The key to this exercise is getting your heels as close to your bum as possible. This can only be done with a barbell once the barbell has been rolled into the hips. One of the biggest problems when using the barbell is the weight that drives down into the boney points. We protect the hips using a thick foam bar pad. It makes the lift so much more comfortable.
Once the barbel has been rolled into the hips, it’s time to brace (squeeze the abs) and then look down at the bar. We then drive our heels into the ground so the force comes from our glutes as we raise our hips in the air, focusing very hard on squeezing our glutes. As the bar is raised, it’s important to maintain eye contact with the bar. Once the barbell has reached parallel to the floor, the barbell can be slowly lowered. The same sequence happens again before we lift.
A variety of reps, sets, weights etc can be used to change the effect of the exercise. Generally speaking, the heavier the weight, the fewer reps and therefore a strong focus is applied. If a lighter load is applied with higher reps this normally focuses on muscular endurance/hypertrophy.
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