9 of the Best Stretches for Stiff, Tight Glutes

Fitness instructor performs a lunge.

Remy Kam/Unsplash

If you've spent most of the past year on your couch or bed, you're not alone—with more than 70% of American adults working from home, using your living room as your office is now the norm. But all that time spent perched on your butt can do a number on your backside as your muscles grow accustomed to hunching over your WFH station all day, every day. The end result? Your glutes, hip flexors, hamstrings, and lower back can grow tight and weak from lack of movement.

Luckily, there's stretches to help, says certified personal trainer and Barry's instructor Remy Kam. Give your bum some TLC with her nine best glute stretches to relieve even the stiffest booty.

Meet the Expert

Remy Kam is a certified personal trainer and Barry's instructor based in Los Angeles.

01 of 09

Knee Pull

leg hug

Remy Kam

This stretch is the perfect warm-up before exercise or cooldown afterward, says Kam. If you're warming up, hug your knee into your chest, hold it for a few seconds, then switch legs for 10 to 12 reps per side. The dynamic stretch will lengthen and loosen up your glutes while priming your hip joints, hip flexors, and leg muscles for the workout ahead. If you want to make the stretch even more dynamic, take a step each time you alternate sides so that you're moving forward while you warm up.

If you'd rather use it as a cool down, stand still while you bend your right knee and hug it in toward your chest. You can also do this while lying down if that's more comfortable. Hold the position for at least 30 seconds before switching sides to give your muscles the chance to soak in the stretch (the same goes for all your other static stretches, too).

02 of 09

Alternating Single Leg Romanian Deadlift

romanian deadlift

Remy Kam

Whether you're looking for another pre-workout stretch or just want to take a midday movement break, this deadlift-style stretch can help. The key to success in this dynamic stretch? Keeping your back straight and hips square, says Kam. That way your glutes get the chance to lengthen and contract as they help lift your upper body and extended leg up and down.

Instructions:

  1. Shift your weight into your right leg.
  2. Hinge at the waist to bring your torso forward and parallel to the floor while extending your left leg straight behind you.
  3. Return to your starting position and switch sides for 10 to 12 reps per side.
03 of 09

Glute Bridge

Glute bridge

Remy Kam

Lengthen and strengthen your glutes at the same time with bridges, according to Kam. This dynamic stretch keeps your booty engaged while releasing tightness. As an added bonus, you'll also stretch out the muscles on the front side of your body while you lift, including your hip flexors and quads. Kam says this move is the perfect way to warm up before your sweat session, and are also a great way to relieve stiffness from sitting at your WFH station all day.

Instructions:

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Press your heels into the floor to lift your pelvis toward the ceiling.
  3. Lower down and repeat 10 to 12 times.
04 of 09

Standing Glute Stretch

figure four

Remy Kam

Tackle tightness in your super-stiff glutes and hips after a tough workout or hours of sitting with this figure-four stretch, says Kam. You can also hold the pose while sitting or lying down to switch things up, she adds.

Instructions:

  1. Shift your weight into your right leg.
  2. Cross your left ankle over your right knee.
  3. Press your left knee toward the ground.
  4. Bend into your standing right leg to deepen the stretch in your left hip and glute.
  5. Switch sides.
05 of 09

Lying Cow Face

lying cow face

Remy Kam

The cow face yoga pose is a triple-threat stretch that works into your hips, outer glutes, and IT band at the same time. And if you're a fan of the above figure four stretch, then you'll be a pro at this similar pose in no time, adds Kam.

Instructions:

  1. Start in a lying figure-four position with your right ankle over your left knee.
  2. Place your right leg over your left, like you're crossing your legs.
  3. Grab an ankle or shin in each hand, then hug both knees toward your chest to feel the stretch.
  4. Switch sides.
06 of 09

Pigeon Pose

pigeon pose

Remy Kam

If you want to take your standing glute or cow face stretches to the next level, then pigeon pose is for you. The yoga position also targets your hips and outer glutes, but the added body weight helps you sink more deeply into the stretch.

Instructions:

  1. Bring your right shin as close to parallel with the top of your yoga mat (if you don't have a mat handy, just imagine one). If that's uncomfortable, you can bring your right foot in closer toward your hips. Extend your left leg behind you with your toes down and heel facing up.
  2. Square both hips forward.
  3. Hold. If you'd like to deepen the stretch, you can lower onto your forearms or chest.
  4. Switch sides.
07 of 09

Lunge

lunge with rotation

Remy Kam

This staple glute stretch is a simple but effective way to loosen up your behind and introduce some movement back into tight hips. Stick to the classic version of the stretch, or add in a spinal twist to help ease back pain and stiffness, says Kam.

Instructions:

  1. Kneel on your left knee with your right knee bent and right foot planted in front of you.
  2. Lean forward, pressing your hip toward the floor.
  3. Keep your glutes relaxed to feel this more in the groin, or squeeze your butt to feel the stretch in your hip flexor and psoas muscle.
  4. If you'd like to add the twist, plant your left hand on the ground. Lift your right arm toward the ceiling to open your chest to the right side. You can leave your left knee on the ground or lift it.
  5. Switch sides.
08 of 09

Downward Dog

downward dog

Remy Kam

There's a reason downward dog is a staple yoga pose. It lengthens the muscles on the back side of your body, including your back, glutes, hamstrings, and calves, says Kam. It also makes for the perfect stretch break in between meetings to get your blood flowing after hours spent at your desk.

Instructions:

  1. Start on all fours.
  2. Tuck your toes to lift your knees off the floor and straighten your legs. Leave a gentle bend in your legs if that's more comfortable.
  3. Press into the heels of your hands to straighten your back.
09 of 09

Seated Twist

seated twist

Remy Kam

Do double duty with this seated spinal twist that will stretch your glutes and loosen up your stiff lower back all at once, says Kam. Your body will thank you once you head back to your desk chair.

Instructions:

  1. Start sitting upright with your legs extended in front of you.
  2. Bend your right knee and cross it over your right leg, placing your foot next to your left thigh.
  3. Open your chest to the right side. Place your right hand on the ground behind you and your left hand around your left knee. If it's comfortable, turn your neck to look over your right shoulder.
  4. Switch sides.

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