Have had a succession of minor injuries throughout the year the most recent being a repeat of a hamstring strain (tweaked it several months ago during the Bath 1/2M and then strained it again 10 days ago on a hilly 5 mile cross country run).

The problem is that my gluteals are not functioning effectively – they're too weak and consequently most of the work is being done by my quads and hamstrings. Last weeks’ cross country proved too much for the hamstrings and I now have a slight tear in the large head on the rhs. The fact that I’m not making use of my glutes has been the cause of other problems too – anterior and posterior hip impingement etc.

Physiotherapy and sports massage has helped temporarily but the only long term solution is to strengthen the gluteals. Does any one know of some good gluteal gluteal strengthening exercises/routines?


  • Hi Graham, well, like you, I'm suffering from an injury. Intially thought it was a hamstring injury but went to the docs and she said it was a strained gluteal muscle!! Literally a pain in the bum! She said I could carry on running (surprise, surprise but she is a runner too!) but to cut down the mileage. So instead, I've been going to the gym to strengthen my hams, glutes etc. So, last Thursday I did a 'bodypump' class. We did lunges and squats (I used light weights) and believe me, my legs certainly felt it the day after. My sore glute was even more sore (I know, silly me!) but my hams and quads left like they had worked though. Maybe something like that would help?

  • Graham - as Roz has experienced, squats and lunges are ideal. You don't have to do them with weights initially, just start with your own body weight. Vary your squat position so you hit the muscles from as many different angles as you can.

    For squats start with your feet hip distance apart, with your knees and toes facing forward, squat down as if sitting on an invisible chair, do not let your knees go past your toes, stick your bum out as you go down (no lower than thighs paralell to the floor) and on the way up really squeeze your glutes. The other foot position for squats is a wider stance with the toes pointing outwards (think 10 minutes to 2 on a clock!), the rest of the exercise is exactly the same.

    Lunges can be done standing and alternating legs, or however many reps on one leg then the other, or - and this is my fave - walking. Basically, take a big step forward, planting the heel down firmly and then go into a lunge trying to get a right angle at each knee and making sure that the knee of the fron foot does not go beyond the toes of that foot.

    This is probably as clear as mud! But if you are a memeber of a gym, get one of the gym instructors to help you.

    Good luck!

  • Graham

    Back arches will help as well. So, shoulders on floor, hands palm down by your sides, feet on floor, raise your body and thighs, keeping them in a straight line. Contract your bum and abs and hold for ten, repeat ten times.

  • You could also try some ballet moves. I'm not sure how you spell it but 'plee-ahs'
    heels together, toes pointed out and squat keeping your back straight. really works you butt.
  • Thanks for the help and advice.

    Ros, sounds like the sort of class I could do with – feels like I’m squatting for Britain at the moment – have also been doing unstable lunges placing big step forward onto a medicine ball (a pile of towels works just as well) – the unstable platform forces all of the core stability muscles to work to maintain balance.

    Shambler – sounds like something out of the Ministry of Silly Walks – co-ordination is not a strong point of mine – if I can manage more than a few steps without toppling over it will be a minor miracle – will give this and all other suggestions a try.

    Atillathenun – could this be done with a small plastic football between the knees squeezing the ball as well as contracting the glutes and abs whilst in the “up” position?

    Mellifera – that certainly works (getting a few odd looks doing this standing at my desk!).

    Thanks again.
  • I've done step class too! Not sure of the glutes benefit but does work up a sweat (if only cos of the fear of looking an eeejit!!!) Plus eases the soreness out of the muscles. I've been three times not and can do moves like 'the mambo', 'the elvis' and 'round the world' lol!!!!! Rock on! Exercise is fun!
  • The mind boggles!
  • Graham, haven't tried it like that, but if it works for you...
  • Not done 'boggling' - how does it go?
  • Mike - it was just a thought.

    Roz - I haven't a clue but am prepared to try (almost) anything - joking aside I do agree with you about exercise being fun otherwise why bother? Tried a yoga class in the summer - most of the participants were taking it far too seriously. Hope you get your own injury problems sorted out (am intrigued to know what on earth the "Elvis" is?) - rock on Rozzy!!
  • Lie on your front - bend knees 90 degrees - raise upper leg off ground - quick lift - slow lowering.
  • ah! 'the Elvis'! I'll try to describe!

    Using the Step, put one foot (for ease I'll say the right foot)on the Step and rotate 180 degrees, turning forwards, keeping right foot on step. Place left foot on floor. Then bend right knee, and 'twist' then reverse the turn! Simple! Only it took me 3 sessions to get it right!!

    C'mom Pantman - try it!
    Rock on you runners!
  • Pantman - another good suggestion, thanks - last time I was prone on my stomach was during a BMF class in Greenwich Park - collapsed exhuasted after doing sets of press ups - a drunk wandered over and said "I don't know if you've noticed but I think shome-one's stolen your girlfriend".
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