Cycling sessions can be great for your well-being. Cycling can help you shed a few pounds, improve your fitness, and sculpt your figure.
Getting on your bike can be a great addition to your exercise routine, but a lot of people want to know if cycling can improve the look of their glutes.
So, can biking make your butt bigger?
Well, as you continue cycling, you may notice your butt looking better, but this is normally due to fat reduction.
Unfortunately, cycling doesn’t make your butt bigger or smaller!
If you want to pack some mass on your glutes, the only way to do that is through strength training.
That being said, biking can still be used to improve the way your butt looks!
It just involves lowering your body fat percentage and increasing your muscle mass.
You’ll find out how to do so in this article, as well as how to activate your glutes while you ride your bike.
Losing Fat Through Cardio
Everyone can benefit from cardio exercise, as it improves heart health, regulates your blood pressure, and helps to keep excess weight off.
However, a lot of cardio exercises aren’t that fun. It can be hard for busy people with jobs, family, or hobbies to get their exercise into their day.
Any exercise that they can manage may not be that fun to do!
That’s where biking can come in handy. Biking is a great exercise for your cardiovascular system, but it’s a fantastic stress reliever too.
Enjoying the fresh air and beautiful scenery can do wonders for your well-being.
Along with that, cycling can also help to reduce your body fat percentage.
This makes your figure look better, but you’ll see a difference in your butt too.
If you want a bigger butt, reducing the amount of fat on your backside may not match your current goals.
However, lowering your body fat percentage can make your glutes stand out underneath, making your bum look smoother and rounder as a result. Who doesn’t want that!
If you’re looking to build your glutes, you’re going to have to start strength training.
Beginners can start with bodyweight movements, like lunges, donkey kicks, and squats.
These movements will help to sculpt your legs and glutes so they look toned and shapely.
However, if you want to add more muscle to your butt, you’ll have to start adding weight to your routine.
Many people shy away from lifting weights, but it’s the only way to add some serious muscle onto your butt, as well as any other areas on your body.
You can use dumbbells, plates, and barbells while doing lower body exercises.
Squats and deadlifts are great for your legs, but hip-thrusts and Romanian deadlifts are the best exercises to add mass to your glutes.
High-Intensity Interval Training
HIIT training can help you torch fat, burn calories, and work out your muscles. You can do this with most exercises, as well as cycling.
You can find many HIIT workouts online, but here’s one you can try next time you’re on your bike.
Ride your bike for 5 mins at a slow/normal pace. When the interval is up, ride at your maximum effort for a minute.
Once the minute is up, recover by riding at the previous pace for 5 minutes, then repeat. Do this for 5 intervals.
If you’re struggling to ride at maximum pace for a whole minute, try half a minute and work up from there.
HIIT training not only shortens the amount of time you spend exercising, but it can also help speed up your metabolism and burn through body fat.
You’ll notice a difference in how your butt looks, as well as your thighs, calves, and hamstrings.
Can You Build Muscle While Spinning?
No, you don’t build much muscle when you ride your bike. Muscle is built by adding pressure on particular muscles, then allowing them to recover and grow stronger.
This occurs during weight training, but not during cardiovascular exercise.
Cardio doesn’t add enough stress to your muscles to make them grow.
People that cycle too much and don’t add in weight training may reduce their muscle growth potential.
This occurs when an individual uses up all their energy during cardio, so the muscles don’t have any energy to build and become stronger.
What About Hill Climbs?
Some may think that cycling up hills builds muscle. This is partly true.
Climbing hills on your bike places more stress on the muscles in your legs. Your muscles have to work harder than they would on flat ground to move you up the hill.
Despite this, most hill climbs don’t last that long, unless you’re cycling through a mountainous location.
As the duration is short, you won’t place enough pressure on your leg and butt muscles to make them bigger.
These muscles will get stronger, sure, but your muscles will need to handle more weight to make them bigger.
Strength doesn’t automatically equal size, so don’t feel disheartened if your butt looks the same after a few hill climbs.
How To Activate Glutes When Biking
Due to the way society has evolved, lots of people have inactive glutes as we don’t use our butt muscles as much.
If you don’t engage your glutes regularly, other muscles will start to work instead.
For example, you may find that you feel squats more in your quads instead of your glutes. This can also happen during cycling.
Lots of cyclists find that their quads are sore after a session, but they never feel the same sensation in their glutes.
This isn’t ideal, so here are some tips on how to activate your glutes when cycling.
Visualization is one of the most important factors when it comes to muscle activation.
As you cycle, concentrate on using your glutes as much as you can.
Try to picture in your mind how your butt muscles are working with each pedal.
A tip to help with visualization is to imagine that you’re doing a single-leg squat with each downstroke.
Think of the movement as you bend your leg and push through your heels.
Try to squeeze your glutes as you pedal, as this can help wake up the muscles in your buttocks.
Everyone has their preferred cycling position, but you need to make sure that your setup is ideal for activating your glutes.
This will look different for everyone depending on your body size, height, and frame.
To set up your cycling position, think of how your legs work as you do a squat. As you pedal up, your knees should be bent at a 90° angle.
When you pedal down, your leg will look like it’s performing a single leg squat. This position is ideal for activating your glute muscles.
However, you should make sure that your seat isn’t too high.
If your knees start to move too high when pedaling, this can cause knee issues later down the line.
Follow the guidelines above, but above all, make sure that your seating position is comfortable.
Use Your Heels
Practically all glute exercises advise you to push through your heels, as this activates the muscle more.
You can do the same when cycling to make sure your glutes are working.
Do take care when you push through your heels, as using too much force can injure your knees.
Only do this if your seating position allows your legs to work as they would in a squat, as outlined above.
Biking may not make your butt bigger, but you can still use cycling to improve how your butt looks.
When you combine cycling with a strength training routine, you’ll notice that you lose fat and gain muscle.
This is perfect for making your butt look rounder! If you do start to do a lot of exercises, remember to schedule rest days.
Your muscles can only become larger and stronger through adequate recovery, so don’t skip your rest day!