How do you build and strengthen your glutes? Well, "just squat and deadlift" is a bullshit answer. If a dude wants bigger and stronger glutes then yes, he needs to do direct glute training. Try these exercises:
At this point, anyone trying to argue that the hip thrust doesn't work for building bigger and stronger glutes is in a massive state of denial. Sadly, a lot of men think it's only for women.
If you're a bro and you're suffering from a severe case of pancake ass, let me offer this up to you. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson posts videos of himself doing hip thrusts on the regular. And he seems fairly manly.
I rotate hip thrusts in often, using the leg extension machine for ease of use.
Paused Sumo Leg Press
This is where you place your feet high and wide on the platform. Lower and pause at the bottom before doing the next concentric.
These offer up a high degree of progressive overload. They can have some pretty good carryover to sumo-style deadlifting as well.
Walking lunges are one of the absolute best movements you can do.
The glute medius gets hammered because it has to perform functionally to stabilize the pelvis, and the glute max gets worked through dynamic hip extension. And if you're taking big steps, the glutes get fully lengthened in the bottom of the lunge.
Lunges are great for building mass, improving stability throughout the lower kinetic chain, and can even improve mobility. If you want to appear super manly, add chains around your neck.
- Hip Thrust in Leg Extension Machine: 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps, holding each rep for 3 seconds at the top.
- Sumo Leg Press: 1-2 sets of 8-10 reps heavy, then 1-2 sets of 20-25 reps.
- Walking Lunge: Until you feel like dying.