A gluteal strain can be a real pain in the butt. Literally. It occurs when a muscle in the region is overstretched or if there’s a tear. This type of injury is often called a pulled muscle. A gluteal strain most often happens when you are running or jumping. And it’s not uncommon for runners to get this injury.

Thankfully with resistance bands, your glutes and butt area will get a thorough stretching and conditioning session. This helps prevents strains and tears, and protects the surrounding muscles such as the hip and thighs as well. To avoid strains, make sure you adopt these resistance band exercises for your glutes.

Split squat back lift
Set a resistance band at your shin level, and move into a half-forward stance – keeping your right foot forward and left heel off the ground. Now lower into a squat, keeping weight centered over right foot, but don’t bend with your knees. Keep your left heel off the floor and push the hips back, reaching both arms out in front of chest.

While coming back up bend the elbows back behind body, and lift the left leg up behind you, till it is past the hip. Don’t lean forward to get this position. Your chest must remain upright. Lower left foot to starting position and repeat. Do 20 reps in a row on each side.

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Back kickers
Get down on the floor on all fours and keep your hips aligned with your bent knees. Tightly secure the band under the arch of your right foot, hold the ends with each hand. One side of the band will be closer to your right foot, while the other would be going across to the other side. Tightly hold on to the ends of the band as you are down on all fours. Your palms should ideally be underneath your shoulders.

Now extend and raise the right leg back, as if kicking out. Keep your toes pointed down toward the floor. The foot must kick out to a position that’s just above your butt line. Without losing the grip around the band, bring your knee back down and get back to all fours. Complete eight to 10 reps, before switching sides Your butt and hamstrings should feel a nice stretch with each rep.

Resisted hip abduction
Stand sideways near a door with your injured side further from the door. Tie the resistance band around the ankle. Knot the other end of the band and close the knot in the door near the floor. Pull the band out to the side, keeping your leg straight. Return to the starting position. Do 2 sets of 15. The further away you move from the wall, the more resistance you will get for a deeper and longer stretch. You will feel the entire network of muscles from the glutes down to your thighs being stretched and activated.

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Kick butt extension
Lie on your back with both legs extended and arms bent by your sides. Hold an end of the resistance band with each hand. Now bend your right knee towards your chest and hold with the base of your foot the center of band. Move the band around till you are sure it will not slide off your foot. Now press your elbows down into ground as if tightening the band, and slowly lift hips off floor as in a glute bridge. Let your right leg extend out straight at a 45-degree angle to the ground. At this point, the band will be stretched out tight. Lower back to start. Do 10 reps in a row on both sides to begin with before increasing your rep count.

Sideways Kicks
This requires some prior adjustment of the band before you get into position on all fours. Keep the band looped around both calves to add resistance to the sideways movement. Now lower down on all fours and while engaging your glutes, bring your right knee straight out to the side, and up toward the ceiling. Flex your right foot and extend the leg to kick out to the side. Complete one rep by coming back to the starting position. Do eight to 10 on each side, and your butt, legs, and outer thighs will get a nice deep stretch while also gaining some strength.

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