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July 01, 2007

Do you have a sporty ass?

I get this question in the gym a lot - "I want to work on my butt, which machine should I use?"  While there are exercises that hit your butt harder than others, the truth is that having an awesome ass is like having awesome abs - you need a great diet and you need an athletic workout. 

Ever notice that athletes always have a great butt?  And legs.  And arms.  And abs.  Guess what, they do lots of squats and lunges.  They're strong.  And in Susan's case (she's the world class high jumper in the picture)- she also does lots and lots of jumping. 

I'm a big fan of box jumps.  When the average gym goer does box jumps, they jump almost completely with their calves.  This is kinda lame.  We want the power for our jump to originate with our hips.  We want to get our glutes, hamstrings, our quads and calves in on the action.  So sit your butt back (just like a squat) and then snap your hips up and forward.  Your hips extend (glutes and hamstrings), your legs extend (quads), and then your feet extend (calves).  Triple extension = great for your butt.

Of course, for everything I like about box jumps, I like kettlebell swings even more.  Similar movement, but because the weight swings behind us, it makes it even easier to load the glutes and hamstrings.  And we can easily jack up the intensity - heavier kettlebells are exponentially harder. 

Bottom line, you need to be doing athletic movements if you want a body like this. 

Squats, deadlifts, lunges, box jumps, kettlebell swings.  I run into clients all the time who were totally stoked on their body when they were in high school playing sports.  No surprise there.

Athletic based workout routines always yield better results than machine based muscle isolation workout routines.  When you focus on performance (speed, power, strength) you almost always end up looking hot.  If you train for performance, the body comes with it.

By Josh HillisHillisArtHEader

The Platinum Coaching Club brings together a community of people who are all doing athletic workouts and getting wicked lean.  We bring it all together - diet, workout, and community accountability.

Josh is the author of the ever-popular fat loss e-book: The Stubborn Seven Pounds

If you've already completed The Stubborn Seven Pounds, take it to the next level with one of these two programs:

"I've seen more results in 6 weeks training with Josh than I saw in the previous two years working out on my own" -Stephanie Weis


Hey Josh: Great site, and thanks for the articles. Totally agree with the points above, and would add that, assuming you've laid the groundwork to handle them, 'sporty' workouts are ALSO a lot more fun than the innie-outie machines, the tricep kickbacks, et al. that most people spend their time doing in the gym.

If you're interested in some more ravings about fitness, check out

All the best

Why don't I read more of your articles?!! I've been receiving them in my mailbox for the past few months and have been putting them in a separate folder on hold! Decided to take a peep at one of them today and you know, I've been missing out on a whole load of stuff! Thank you, btw for starting this website!
I would like to ask you - what would u recommend an athletic built 136 pound girl at 5ft4 in height to do to get into better shape? I've been reading many articles, but not acting on any. I've heard that a low carb diet is best for mesomorphs - however, the Irish diet is practically all carbs! Also any particular workouts for someone who loves to dance, but working 7-9 most nights in a hospital?
Thanks again!

Hey Philippa!

Glad you like my articles!

I'm not really a "low carb" trainer. Most of my clients will feel really tired on a low carb diet. But it's tottally individual, which is why you have to keep a food log. You can see if you have more energy and feel more full with more carbs or more protein.

Start with keeping a food log. Log your calories. Eyeball your ratios of proteins, carbs, and fats. Note which meals make you feel MORE HUNGRY an hour after you eat them. Change those meals. Try, one meal at a time, to switch out processed carbs for real food like fruits, oatmeal, ect.

Workout wise, think big movements. Pushing, pulling and squatting.

Have fun!

hi! my name is faccity! your site is good! i will visit it again! good luck!

Who is that athlete?

Good review

Fantastic site! I've read several of the articles and feel so inspired and with a more intelligent sense of what I need to do to get the body I want! Thank you :)

You have a cool site. Yep, this athlete sure has nice butt but also it is important to pay attention to muscle balance. She is obviously not balanced since her back is way arched..more on stretching too, please.

Muscles that are too tight will prevent the full capacity training of the pairing muscles- for example hamstrings vs. quadriceps. So it's important.. also the core strenght, deep abs are so important to keep in mind while performing these kind of extreme exercises. I think that a unfit person cannot start 100% right away but must first stretch, start slowly to find connection with the body again and later move on to the harder exercises.

That's all. I'm from Finland, happened to find your site. Can you send me your writings via email?

Yes, balance is definitely important.

But balance is not always found in Olympic level competitors.

High level sport often brings with it profound sport specific muscle imbalances.

If you want to get this blog emailed to you, you can sign up in the top right hand corner. enjoy!


I wanted to ask u 4 samples of circuit training like jessica biels. thanx

Learn the truth behind weight loss once and for all. "The Reason You Can't Lose Weight has Nothing to Do With Your Will-Power, Over-Eating or the Right Diet! ... The Reason You are Fat and Unhealthy is Because You Have Disgusting Plaque and Horrible Little 'CRITTERS' Living in Your Guts!" "...And Now I'm Going to Show You How to Get Rid of All of It so You Can Shed 10 lbs, 25 lbs, 50 lbs even 100 lbs or more - and Keep It Off FOREVER!!"

Learn the truth behind weight loss once and for all. "The Reason You Can't Lose Weight has Nothing to Do With Your Will-Power, Over-Eating or the Right Diet! ... The Reason You are Fat and Unhealthy is Because You Have Disgusting Plaque and Horrible Little 'CRITTERS' Living in Your Guts!" "...And Now I'm Going to Show You How to Get Rid of All of It so You Can Shed 10 lbs, 25 lbs, 50 lbs even 100 lbs or more - and Keep It Off FOREVER!!"

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Found your blog looking for resources on weight loss online, very constructive resource, thank you and wishing you all the best. Abe,

It all starts on one's own mind, it takes determination, hard work and believing that one can make it on their own, losing weight and weight loss is a very challenging process, both physical and emotional, whether you are adopting a rapid weight loss diet plan, following a successful weight loss story or trying to lose weight slowly on your own using common sense, actually it is a question of common sense, eat less, practice more, drink water and stay away of sugar

I am involved with fitness, and I can say squats, sit ups and push uos are the core exercises to have a nice and fit ass.

My wife does Pilates every other day and her ass us just perfect.

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