Squats are one of the best exercises you can do for stronger, more toned glutes, but the truth is there isn't a magic formula for exactly how many squats you should do a day to get a bigger butt.
"Strength training boasts plenty of benefits for your overall health and wellness, but one thing exercise cannot do is grow you a 'bigger' booty," says trainer Nicole Blades. "What daily or weekly squats will do is strengthen those big muscles in your lower body - primarily the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and hips."
Trainer Walter Kemp says there's no perfect answer for how many squats you should do each day for a bigger butt because people have different body types. "We are all built differently and have different needs as far as muscle development," Kemp says.
That said, scoring a rounder backside means doing a variety of exercises that target different muscles in your glutes (yes, there's more than one muscle!). And it's important to train the other muscles if you ultimately want a rounder, bigger booty. Here's what you need to know about your glutes and what can do to improve your squat so you can get the best booty boost from your workouts.
If you're wondering how many reps of squats you should aim for in a workout, 10 to 15 reps for three to four rounds is ideal.
What are the muscles in your glutes?
Your glutes are comprised of three muscles: gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, and gluteus maximus. Your gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in your glutes and often gets the most action because it's the primary mover for several butt exercises, like squats, deadlifts, and even running. But that doesn't mean you should ignore your other glute muscles.
The gluteus medius and minimus are responsible for abduction (moving your legs away from the midline), hip rotation, and hip stability. A weakness in these minor glute muscles often leads to knee and low-back pain.
Personal trainer Zoe Rodriguez says, "I do a lot of resistance band work to engage the smaller glute muscles. Exercises like hip thrusts, glute bridges, and clam, can round out the top of your butt for that fuller look." Rodriguez says that these exercises can also be used as a warm-up to wake up the muscles before you start doing squats, which brings us to our next question:
How often should I do squats every week?
You shouldn't be doing squats every day. In fact, Rodriguez says that recovery days are just as important as working your glutes when it comes to building a bigger booty. "I generally recommend doing squats two to three times a week with 36 to 48 hours of rest for that muscle group," she says. "When you work out you create micro tears in your muscle tissue, and they need time to rebuild after a workout."
In addition to working your glutes, you want to focus on building stronger hip flexors, too. These opposing muscles are important for hip opening and preventing muscle imbalances. "Doing frogger stretches, banded abductions, and lunges can help target the hip flexors and make them stronger," Rodriguez says.
If you're wondering how many reps of squats you should aim for in a workout, Rodriguez says 10 to 15 reps for three to four rounds is ideal. "You want to focus on volume instead of adding load. This gets you into the hypertrophic range to encourage muscle growth," Rodriguez says.
What is proper squat form?
Squats in itself are pretty challenging, so you don't need to try very hard to make them more intense. Blades recommends adding plyometrics, like doing squats jumps, squat jacks, or box jumps. Simply changing your stance by widening your toes out for a sumo squat also targets your inner thighs. You can play with different ranges of motion, too. Rodriguez says she likes to add pulses at the bottom of a squat before standing back up, while Blades is all about dumbbell squat thrusters and exploding up to press the weights overhead. Lastly, using different types of resistance, whether it's kettlebells, dumbbells, or resistance bands, gives your body a new challenge.