Do you remember that commercial with the Native American shedding a single tear when he sees someone littering? Today it would show Sir Mix-A-Lot crying because Americans are losing their butt muscles.

You remember the song

                              The glutes are a common term for the group of muscles in your buttocks: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. With so many jobs requiring extended periods of sitting, our TV/computer watching habits, job commutes, and more the muscles of the buttocks are going to waste. Weak glutes can cause low back pain, knee injuries and hamstring pulls, can make climbing stairs harder, and have many other negative effects. Besides the aesthetic benefit, working these muscles can help prevent or fix a lot of these problems, increase athletic performance and improve overall strength. The video above showed 3 ways to get those muscles back active again and working for you. Once they are back on the job, you are ready to move onto getting them to look and perform better. Common glute exercises are squats, leg presses, lunges, dead lifts and abductions. If you are already doing these exercises but still lack glute strength, you are probably letting your thighs do too much of the work. Try consciously squeezing the glute muscles and pushing through the heels - as opposed to the toes - when performing these exercises. Here are some other glute exercises that you might not have tried that are very effective: • Crossover step ups: Put your right foot next to a step, bench or even a curb. The height you use and whether or not you use weights will be based on how experienced you are. Step your left foot across your body up onto the platform. Keeping your hips facing to the front, step your right foot up onto the platform. Step back down with your right foot and start all over. • Plank side kick hold: Lie on your stomach and prop yourself up on your forearms where only your forearms and toes are touching the ground. Keep your right leg straight, move it 45 degrees to side at hip level, and hold for 10-30 seconds. Do the same on the left side. • Rear foot elevated squat with one weight: Start with your right foot up on a bench, shoelaces flat on the bench, left foot two to three feet away from the bench and the weight in your right hand. Keeping your chest up and shoulders back through the whole movement, bend your left knee to lower your right knee toward the ground. Don't let your right knee touch the ground, and drive back up to the starting position.