The gluteal muscles are a group of three muscles which make up the buttocks: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The functions of the Glute muscles includes extension, abduction, external rotation and internal rotation of the hip joint. The gluteus maximus is the largest gluteal muscle and is a powerful hip extensor. However, it also assists in femoral external rotation and abduction, as well as, knee, pelvis, and spinal stabilization. Gluteus medius and minimis produce almost the same actions, They play a significant role in injury prevention because they are the primary stabilizers of the pelvis. They also abduct and externally rotate the femur.
If your glutes are not strong, or not firing properly, your entire lower body alignment may fall out of balance causing problems such as achilles tendinitis, shin splints, runner’s knee, iliotibial band syndrome, hamstring strains, low back pain, anterior knee pain, anterior hip pain, and ACL sprains just to name a few. When your glutes are not firing properly other muscles work a lot harder than they should. Most people sit for long periods of time so the glutes are functionally asleep causing other muscles to compensate. Improving glute strength and motor control will significantly increase performance and prevent lower back, hip and knee dysfunction. Your glutes are the largest and most powerful muscles in your body. Take advantage of them and use them to their fullest potential. Also think of them like the rotator cuff of your lower body. Glutes that work properly prevent a lot of injuries. Strong glutes help to keep your lower body healthy. Not to mention the strength and explosiveness that you’ll gain. Plus, think of how aesthetically pleasing your glutes will be. No ones ever complained about a nice bum. Don’t be like this guy

Here are 5 sample exercises to fire up your glutes before exercise.

Floor bridge

Side-lying abduction

Clam shell

Lateral band walk

Monster walk