Personal Trainers Kihei HI
Personal Trainer, Yoga Instructor
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Dead Treadmill Cardio For Developing the Glutes...Get a Better Butt FAST With This Training Trick
The function of the gluteus maximus muscle is to extend the hip...this essentially means bringing the leg backwards.
The treadmill tread (when it's running) physically BRINGS your leg backwards with no help from the glutes, taking away all the function of the glutes when you're on it.
So every time you do your cardio on the treadmill, you're overworking your hip flexors (which are the muscles that work to bring the leg back up in front of you) and underworking the glutes.
This can actually make posture and lower back problems WORSE (especially if you don't stretch the hip flexors after working on the treadmill) by heigtening the imbalances of the muscles of the hip.
And if you already find you have trouble feeling your glutes working when you do lower body exercises, "normal" powered treadmill training is about the WORST choice of cardio machines for you. It's doing nothing to help activate the glutes.
So here's the dead-simple tip for the next time you do anything on the treadmill...
Turn it off.
When you use the treadmill without it being powered, what do you think has to supply the energy to move that tread?
It's a DIRECT action for the glutes (and the rest of the lower body) that has you actually accomplishing some WORK rather than just moving your legs along for the ride.
This is also the reason you can run and walk so much faster and easier on the treadmill...the machine is doing the work of moving your legs backwards and you're not required to use the BIG muscles of the glutes to actually propel your body forward.
And the most IRONIC part of it?
This technique actually works better on a machine that normally IS powered. I'm sure you've heard of or seen treadmills that aren't powered...these have much less resistance to the tread being moved backwards because they want people to actually use them (you know what I mean :).
When you're using a machine that is normally powered, there is significantly more resistance to the belt moving without that outside power and you're going to get a GOOD workout out of it.
So next time you use the treadmill, leave it off. Set your hands on the bar and lean forward like you're about to push a car. And start walking. Use GLUTE power to get the tread moving and keep it moving.
You're going to get a MUCH better glute workout and cardio workout by doing this.
On a side note, if you find the resistance is a bit too much on the treadmill, turn it back on and set it to an incline. Then turn it back off again and do the walking on a slope.
By walking on an incline like this, you actually make the exercise easier. Gravity is going to give you some assistance in moving that tread backwards but you'll still need a decent amount of push to keep the tread moving.
Once you've developed a feel for what it takes to move the tread on your own, then you can progress to some interval ...