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Training Tips

ISSA Talk: Glute Training—What Trainers Need to Know

Reading Time: 6 minutes 20 seconds

Edited for clarity.

Erin Mahoney:

Hi, everybody. Welcome to ISSA Talk. I'm Erin Mahoney, VP of Product over here at ISSA, and I am so excited to bring to you an ISSA talk devoted to glutes, because we are launching the industry's first certified glute specialization course. This is a great course because it's in high demand right now, not just from an aesthetic perspective, but because we've been receiving overwhelming feedback from the market to develop a course just devoted to the topic of glutes.

Now, we'll get into more details, but let me introduce our cohost, Jenny Scott. I am so excited to have Jenny here. She's been a personal trainer for over 11 years, and she's also a national level figure and wellness competitor and a volleyball coach. On top of all of that, Jenny is our ISSA resident glute expert. So, Jenny, thank you for talking to us today about glutes.

Jenny Scott:

Yes. Thank you for having me, Erin.

Erin Mahoney:

You got it. Like I said, Jenny's here today because she was the primary contributor for our new glute specialization. So, if you have a question on glutes, Jenny's the person to go to. All right, let's move into this. All right, now that we're talking about glutes, can you talk a little bit, specifically, about what is glute training exactly, and what kind of clients even need it?

Jenny Scott:

Absolutely. That's a great question, Erin. And a lot of trainers, or even clients, are going to have that same question. Glute training is, specifically, training your glutes, the three muscles of your glutes, but also it takes a look at your lumbopelvic hip complex. So, your core, both front and back, and down into your legs as well, it all contributes to glutes, which everybody needs to train. Not just athletes, not just people who have weak knees, but it's a key part of balance, it's a key part of proper movement, controlling your legs and your lower body. Everybody can benefit from glute training, so that's why I'm so excited to have written this and get it out to people, because everybody that they work with should be able to use this material.

Erin Mahoney:

I love what you just said here, because you weren't just focusing on your female clients that want to improve how they look, you said something that is really interesting. You said, "Hey, not just people with bad knees." Tell me a little bit about somebody with bad knees and why they might want glute training also?

Jenny Scott:

Absolutely. Glutes have a huge part to do with the way that our body moves our legs. With your abducting and adducting, flexion and extension at your hip, and at your knee. Okay? It all plays in at that hip and through your glute. So, the stronger your glutes are, surprisingly, the more control you can have over your knees. I talk a lot about it in the certification, super excited for you guys to dig into it, all of the five kinetic chain checkpoints are affected by your glutes. Even your shoulders, even your neck and head. It's all explained in there how it all matters. But the stronger your glutes are, they control the middle of your body and you're going to have such better posture control, movement control, and just a better overall fitness level.

Erin Mahoney:

That's really cool to hear, and I'm sure our viewers feel the same way. The truth is, a lot of us are still in quarantine right now, and a lot of people, a lot of clients, have desk jobs. When you're at a desk job, you're not really training your glutes very actively, are you?

Jenny Scott:

No, you're sitting on your glutes. Absolutely. Yeah, most of us are sitting or have our hip flexors crunched up for 60 to 80% of our day. And that's a number one contributor to why people have weak or inactive glutes. Your hip flexors are in the front of your hips here, and it includes your psoas, your iliacus, your TFL and your rectus femoris, and your sartorius on the inside of that leg. But we have to make sure that those are not overactive because there's inhibition that happens naturally in your body. Where your glutes will relax to let your hip flexors work, your hip flexors should relax to allow your glutes to work. But if your hip flexors are overactive, then your glutes are not firing the way they need to, which means you are not in control of your lower body. So a lot of us need to do some work there.

Erin Mahoney:

I hear you. And so, to recap, right? We've got people, just to function better. People that might have aches and pains elsewhere on their body. People that want to look better. Tell me this. You've gone through all this research behind glutes, I mean, it's incredible what you've done here, but is it safe to say the average personal trainer should already know this information?

Jenny Scott:

You'll know some of it, but some of it you may not connect the dots, as far as how it controls dynamic knee stability, or ankle stability, or how it even affects your shoulders. Then there's also specific movements that will really target your glutes, and it's not just squats and lunges, this goes way beyond that. There's different movements, in the different plane of motion that we discuss in this course, that really help trainers help their clients focus in on their glutes through different movement patterns. So that's the key to this course, is really targeting, specifically, your glutes and leaving your legs out of it.

Erin Mahoney:

That's good to know. For people that are watching in part two, we're going to talk a little bit more about what goes into that specialized programming. What I heard you say, Jenny, is, yes, the average personal trainer knows a lot about glutes, but not necessarily to the level of detail that they might need in order to promote themselves as a glute specialist, being able to get people whatever goals they might want. Is that right?

Jenny Scott:

Exactly. If you want to dig in, training is a big cake, I love cake, but this is that specific slice for glutes that you really have to take off the pan. You have to dig into this piece, specifically.

Erin Mahoney:

I like the cake metaphor.

Jenny Scott:

Who doesn't love cake?

Erin Mahoney:

It's perfect. All right, before we move on and transition out, let me ask you a couple more questions. What do you think the market is like? How would a client be interested in this? Or how would you, as the trainer, be promoting yourselves in order to make more money by having this certification?

Jenny Scott:

Absolutely. You have to promote the benefits. It's all about the benefits. So, balance control, whether it's a teen that you're working with, that's an athlete, or a 75-year-old male or female. Everybody can benefit from it. You have to be able to explain to them what they're going to get out of it. That person that tripped and fell down the stairs, it can help them cause they're going to have better balance and stability. That athlete that's trying to build power, it will absolutely help them. General population, if you sit on your bottom for eight or more hours a day in the car, eating dinner, at your desk, then this is for you. And you can absolutely explain that to people.

The biggest thing, I'm sure we'll talk about it later too, is assessments. When you do assessments with clients, especially squat assessments, there's so much information that can be garnered from that, and you can easily show people that they need glute training specifically.

Erin Mahoney:

I'll tell you what, Jenny, I feel like I know a lot about glutes, I don't know nearly as much as you do. Jenny took the product team out for a workout a couple of weeks ago, applying some of this stuff, and, oh my gosh, I can't tell you how sore my glutes were, not that you guys have to go through that pain. But as we transition away, Jenny, what is your favorite glute exercise that you learned, or that maybe you already knew, but what's your favorite one that you love to use with clients?

Jenny Scott:

I have to say the hip thrust. It's a tough movement, but whether you do it in a machine or with a barbell, it is a very specific, really good glute-focused movement.

Erin Mahoney:

All right, there you have it. We just did a really brief overview on ISSA's new glute specialist certification. In part two of this webinar, our favorite glute expert, Jenny, is going to be talking us through why you can't just squat and deadlift your way to the glutes, right? Tell me that's true or not true.

Jenny Scott:

It's 100% true. There's so much more than squats, deadlifts, and lunges.

Erin Mahoney:

All right, cool. Well, thank you again, Jenny, for joining us. We will connect with you guys on part two so that we can hear about what else you can be doing besides squats and deadlifts.

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