Ah the booty. No one ever said, “I really want a saggy, floppy butt.” And yet I can’t think of anyone that has said, “I want to do 500 squats and 500 donkey kicks every day.” How about if you could have a perky, toned ‘lil backside with a home workout needing only a sturdy chair and doing a few tiny movements? If you’ve been a barre class, you know exactly what I mean. And if you haven’t, you’re about to learn. Regardless of your barre experience, anyone can do this barre booty home workout and get the fabulous tush you want.
Now I’m the first to admit, I wasn’t born with a big round ba’donka donk. Flat bottom girls unite! Although I work on my boot-ay quite often, I’ve accepted that I’ll never have the butt everyone rivals. BUT (ha, see what I did there?), I will say, my bottom is fit and toned – which is a-ok with me! A few squats here and there, combined with a steady schedule of barre workouts, keep my booty in check.
These barre booty exercises are some of my favorites because they are effective, challenging, low-impact, and do-able almost anywhere. I’ll work these moves on a bench at the park, in my living room watching Real Housewives, or as I’m getting my ‘cook on’ standing at the stove.
Did I mention anyone can do this? I meant it. I instruct these moves in the barre classes I teach – barre-goers from ages 16 – 70+. So if you think you’re booty is over hill, think again!
Some key form points when executing this workout:
- Keep your chest lifted at all times and avoid leaning forward (keep your shoulders stacked directly above your hips)
- When lifting your leg, try to eliminate any sway in your lower back. To do this (very important), roll your hips forward. If your booty is protruded out behind you, your form is incorrect. Shifting or rolling your hips forward towards the chair ensures your booty is tucked under (this is what we want). It may be difficult to raise your leg high behind you, and that is a good thing.
- When executing these moves, make sure to consistently check that your hips are rolled forward/booty is tucked. It can be easy to lose your form when tired.
- You can choose to stand on the ball of your standing foot the entire time (like I do in the photos), or stand flat-footed.
- Each motion is SMALL – just a few inches. If you are able to swing your leg with a wide range of motion, check to make sure your booty is tucked forward.
Do this entire round on one leg, then switch to the other leg. Try not to take a break in between – that means not letting your working leg touch the floor the entire time.
Back Leg Lifts
Start with your left foot planted and lift your right leg behind your body, just a few inches off the ground. Then elevate the back leg slightly, until you feel the resistance in your butt. Bring your leg back to the original position and do these small, intricate moves a total of 30 repetitions.
Place your right foot directly behind your left ankle with the top of your knee facing your right. Gently lift your right leg up and behind your body, keeping the bend in your right knee – avoid letting the top of your knee shift towards the chair. Do 30 repetitions, tapping your standing ankle then lifting.
(Note – I changed positions to better show these movements – you do not need to change the direction that you are facing and can still execute this move facing the back of the chair). Lift the right leg out to the side and a few inches behind your right leg and flex your foot. Keeping your hips rolled forward, lift your right leg a few inches high. Come back to the original position and do 30 repetitions.
Bend you right knee, creating a 90 degree angle with your leg and flex your foot. Next, ‘push’ your heel towards the back as you continue to keep your hips rolled forward, stacked directly under your shoulders. Bring your heel back in and do 30 repetitions.
Bring your right leg back to the 90 degree angle, right shin parallel to the ground, foot flexed. Next, lift your heel up towards your booty, keeping the knee stationary. Do 30 repetitions.
Lift your right leg and extend it behind your body, keeping a slight bend in your knee. Next, straighten your knee as you extend your leg back, all while squeezing the right side of your booty as you extend the leg, as elongated as you can. Do 30 repetitions.
Did you feel that booty work? You may have even felt fatigue in your supporting leg. All totally normal. If you couldn’t do 30 repetitions at a time or had to stop in between exercises, maybe try less reps and build up.