We all want a nice booty, right?

Incorporate the following best backside exercises in your regular strength routine and you'll burn fat, shape and firm your booty, sculpt surrounding muscle groups, and rev up your metabolism.

1. Kettlebell Swings

Kettlebell swings combine strength and cardio training to redefine your backside. In addition to toning your glutes and hip flexors, you'll work your core, and cardiovascular system (an all-in-one exercise). Stand with your legs shoulder width apart.  Place the kettlebell about one foot in front of you.  Push your hips backward, with a slight bend in the knee (shins almost vertical) and reach forward, placing both hands on the kettlebell.  From your "hike position" (hips pushed backward, back flat, and chest out) hike the kettlebell behind you, with a purpose (don't let go).Drive your hips forward, while contracting your glutes and tucking your tailbone under, to swing the kettlebell (always above the knees) until you are standing at "attention" with your hands about chest height.

Important Tips: Always make sure to keep your abs tight (this will keep your lower back protected.)  Keep your neck in line with the rest of your spine.  Always drive the swing with your hips and NOT your arms.  If the bell ever gets too far out in front of you, never reach for it- just let it drop!

2. Lunges

Lunges are a workout staple that will firm your butt and tone your legs. Start with your feet hip width apart then step forward with one leg. Keeping your abs tight, chest high, and spine straight, sink down into the move until your front thigh is parallel to the floor and your back knee is almost touching the ground. Concentrate on squeezing your glutes as you push through your front heel back to the starting position. Important tip: don't let your moving knee extend past your toes.

3. Step Ups

This is a great exercise for your butt as well as your quads and calves. Step ups also increase your heart rate so you'll get the extra benefit of fat-blasting cardio. Stand with your right foot firmly planted on a step or a bench, your left foot on the floor. Push down through your right heel to straighten and stand on your right leg, squeezing your glutes at the top of the movement. At the same time, pull your left leg forward and up, knee bent 90 degrees and raised waist-high. Lower your left leg back to the ground, then step your right foot down. Alternate legs to make one rep.

4. Single Leg Bench Squats

All you need for this one is a bench! Stand in a staggered stance with your left foot slightly in front of your right.  Keep your right foot flat on the ground and point your left toe up and left heel down so it is in contact with the floor.  You will be using your right leg to do the squat. Squat down with your right leg and slowly lower yourself onto the bench (use L heel for balance).  Keep your eyes forward and chest up.  Stand back up focusing on pushing up through the right heel.  The left foot will help you balance as you stand up out of the squat. Do a full series of reps before switching to your left leg for the second half of the set.

5. Single Leg Deadlifts

Single leg deadlifts do triple duty, activating your muscles for a highly effective toning session that works your butt, hamstrings, and lower back. Holding a kettlebell/dumbbell in each hand, stand with your feet hip width apart, knees soft. Keeping your weight firmly on your left leg, lean forward from your hips, reaching the dumbbells toward your left foot and raising your right leg out behind you. Remember to keep your core tight and not round your back. Now stand straight, squeezing your glutes as you come back to start. Do a full series of reps before switching to your right leg for the second half of the set.

In case you are not in our current boot camp session, we cover these exercises and MUCH MUCH MORE!   Seattle's Best Boot Camp's next session begins March 19.  SIGN UP NOW!

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