For all the fitness freaks out there, we know how important it is to keep your glutes in shape. They might not be the most popular muscles, but they require the same attention as your abs, biceps, and lats. So, you cannot complete your lower body workout without some cable glute kickbacks.
No doubt, the gluteal muscles require fine-tuning to build strength and resistance. They are the strongest muscles in your body and are responsible for maintaining hip movement and stability of the pelvis.
Therefore, you must regularly conduct a glute isolation exercise, and nothing works best for glutes than a cable kickback exercise.
From how to perform glutes to using different variations, we have compiled everything you need to know about cable workouts for glutes. There are alternative exercises mentioned as well that are equally great for your gluts. So, keep reading to learn everything about glute cable kickback.
What Are Glute Kickbacks?
The cable glute kickback is one of the best lower body exercises which isolates your glutes. It is a simple workout based on hip extension and armed with a cable and an ankle attachment. It targets your gluteal muscles and helps develop and strengthen them.
Benefits Of Cable Glute Kickback
Before diving into the technical details of performing cable kickbacks for glutes, let us first discuss why these exercises are essential. All glute exercises are important, especially kickbacks, as they are responsible for hip and thigh movement. In addition, they help you improve your balance, especially during jumping, standing, and climbing stairs.
As mentioned above, leg kickbacks with cable are a great way to stabilize your hip and pelvis. But there are other ways they impact your body too. Here are some back kick exercise benefits:
1. Strength Gain
Cable glute kickbacks are known to build serious leg strength. The stronger your glutes are, the more powerful your lower body movement will be. So by performing Cable Glute Kickback, you improve your performance in other exercises at the gym.
For example, if you want to enhance your maximum deadlift or increase the squat intensity, you can use glute kickbacks with cable as a supplementary exercise.
2. Boost Atheltic Performance
Thanks to cable glute kickback, you can now get stronger gluteal muscles, greatly enhancing your athletic movements. Most sports movements like running and jumping rely on explosive leg movements, which kickbacks can help with. So they should never be overlooked.
3. Isolation Advantage
Unlike other lower body exercises, such as squats and deadlifts, cable glute kickback is an isolation exercise. It specifically targets your gluteal muscles in isolation, bringing a considerable advantage.
Therefore, if you have particularly weak glutes in comparison to your other muscles, then by doing kickbacks, you can balance them. In addition, the isolation of glutes will help in the even distribution of muscle throughout the lower body.
4. Improved Balance
While performing cable glute kickback, you improve your body control because all your leg muscles get involved. For example, as you move your legs backward, your calves, quads, ankle, and core muscles all activate to stabilize you.
So when you perform kickback in a controlled and proper fashion, you improve the connection between your mind and body, which improves your balance. The greater muscle activation and heightened awareness work together to enhance your balancing skills.
Muscle Groups Used During Cable Glute Kickbacks
By now, you must have realized that Cable Glute Kickbacks is an isolation exercise that can seriously bolster your lower body. But precisely what muscles it target and how it works are mentioned below.
As we all know, Cable Glute Kickbacks are primarily for gluteal muscles in your legs. These muscles have 3 categories:
- the gluteus maximus
- the gluteus medius
- the gluteus minimus
These 3 make the most powerful muscles in your body. Be it cable kickbacks at home or cable machine glute exercises at the gym; they help shape these and strengthen them as a cohesive unit.
Even though kickback exercises for glutes focus mainly on the muscles mentioned above, they also engage other muscles in your body. These include the hamstrings, the calves and quads, and other leg muscles which stabilize your body during the glute kickback cable motion. In addition, they also activate the abdominal muscles and support the upper body.
Thus, all these benefits point out that having solid glutes dramatically impacts your daily life. Moreover, firm glutes also equal sexy glutes and lead to an aesthetically pleasing backside nobody can deny.
Without powerful glutes, you will have poor stability and posture and feel knee and hip pain. You are also likely to have poor balance when standing on one leg. So, you must add cable standing glute kickback to your day-to-day routine now!
How To Do Kickbacks?
You can perform cable glute kickbacks both with or without a machine. However, glutes with a cable machine produce the best result. So, let’s focus on the cable glute crossover machine.
Equipment Needed To Perform Cable Kickback
The things you require to perform cable glute kickbacks are:
- A glute kickback machine
- A cable glute kickback ankle strap
Setting up the Equipment
- Set the pulley to the lowest setting and attach the ankle strap to your ankle.
- Set your feet apart and bend over; hold on to the machine for stability if required.
Steps To Perform Kickback On Cable Machine
- Keep your face towards the machine, your leg straight, and engage your abs.
- Contract your glutes and stretch one leg far back in a controlled fashion.
- Put pressure on your glutes at the top of the reps and hold for 1-2 seconds.
- Then gradually return to the starting position.
- Repeat for the desired number of reps and then switch legs
Variations Of Cable Glute Kickback
The switch is similar to the traditional cable glute kickback and requires you to rotate your foot 90 degrees when swinging your leg back.
Glute Pushdown Machine
This kickback variation requires you to adjust the leg pad and fit it in the crook of your knee. It engages your abs and contracts your glutes further when you bring the pad down and back.
Resistance Band Glute Kickback
To increase the intensity of the exercise, this variation adds resistance bands to put more pressure on your glutes.
Tips And Tricks
If you are a beginner in the cable glute kickback regime, then here are some quick tips and tricks. These will help you perform 3-4 sets efficiently without overdoing your muscles.
- The exercise speed should be 1-2 seconds in the lifting phase, 1-second to squeeze at the top, and 3-4 seconds in the lowering phase.
- Remember, form is key in kickbacks. It is an isolation exercise, and its focus should be on the recruitment and contraction of the glutes.
- Perform 12-15 repetitions per set if using lightweight. Go for 6-8 repetitions if using a heavier weight.
- At the top of the movement, focus on squeezing the muscle to force more blood into the muscle fiber. This creates more micro-trauma and intensifies hypertrophy.
- At the top of a glute kickback, pressure your glutes to get an 81 percent maximal voluntary muscle contraction.
- Cable glute kickbacks should be performed later in your lower body workout. First, go for more extensive compound exercises such as deadlifts, squats, and leg presses to strengthen up.
- Find the ideal weight. It may take some time. So, if you can only perform 4-5 reps, the weight is too heavy. But, if you can do more than 20 reps, the weight is too light. In both scenarios, you need to change weight to increase effectiveness.
- Ideally, when doing more than 12-15 repetitions, it’s time to increase the resistance.
Mistakes To Avoid While Performing Cable Glute Kickback
Every exercise requires precision, and you can easily make mistakes in the position, form, or movement, which can render it ineffective. So to ensure that you are getting your kickback exercise muscles worked properly, avoid these mistakes:
1. Using Legs to Drive Momentum
We often see weight lifters making the mistake of swinging their legs back using motion during cable glute kickbacks. This reduces the efficiency of the exercise as it takes the pressure off the glutes. It usually happens when you try to lift too much weight.
So, instead of using your legs to drive the ankle strap, squeeze your glutes to give them maximum potential.
2. Performing Partial Reps
From time to time, we also see lifters failing to make an impact because they are unable to complete repetitions. They partially extend their leg and take it back only a few feet. This reduces the efficacy of the cable glute kickback as the exercise depends on the full range of motion.
The further you move your leg backward, the more pressure your glutes will feel. So, focus on completing the full stretch even if you have to reduce the weight.
3. Standing up Straight
One of the most common mistakes made by lifters and builders when performing during the cable glute kickback is standing up erect. Remember, if your body is fully vertical, it hinders the greater range of motion, making it difficult to target the glute muscles.
So, it’s best to bend over and hinge at the waist to allow a more significant impact.
Substitute For Glute Kickbacks
If you want to try more ways to get your cable kickback muscles worked, here are some cable glute kickback alternatives that you might enjoy. They are similar to cable kickback exercises and help improve your lower body. However, the steps and positions to perform them are slightly different.
For your ease, we have mentioned each exercise in detail so you can try all of them and see what works best for you:
Leg Back Toe Down Pulses
This is one of the best exercises after cable kickbacks. It does wonders to your leg muscles and doesn’t require any additional equipment. Follow these steps to perform it:
- Take a starting position by going on all fours
- Your hands should be under your shoulders.
- Extend your right leg behind
- Your toes should face downwards.
- Squeeze your glutes and your leg up and down.
- Perform the desired number of repetitions
- Switch legs and repeat!
Another glute cable kickback alternative that is very effective and easy to perform is Hip bridges. Here is how you can try this exercise at home and get strong glutes:
- Lie down with arms by your sides. Your knees should be bent, and the palms facing down.
- Contract your glutes and raise the hips off the floor as high as you can.
- At the top, put pressure on your glutes and gradually return to the starting position.
This exercise requires you to position yourself like a donkey, thus the name. Here are the steps to perform it:
- Get on all your fours by placing your hands directly under the shoulders.
- Brace your abs and take one leg backward
- Squeeze your glutes and gradually come back to the starting position.
- Switch your legs. Repeat!
Even though this glute cable kickback alternative is not as effective as the cable kickback exercise, it does strengthen your glutes. However, it takes some time, but the best part is you can do it anywhere and anytime. You can even perform donkey kickback with a band or on a donkey kick weight machine to increase effectiveness.
Its A Wrap
It’s a wrap for us but not for you. You still have glutes to strengthen. So no matter what your gym goal is, add cable glute kickback to your routine. It will do wonders for your leg muscles, strength, athletic performance, and appearance. And the best part is you can even do
Have a good time targeting your glutes, and let us know whether it worked for you or not. Don’t overwork it, as glute kickback is not an ego exercise. Instead, do it gently and focus on form, full range of motion, and proper execution. Indeed, you will see results within a week!