Skip to content Skip to footer
db hip thrust

Share Us

Daniel Mesa

Dumbbell Hip Thrust: How To & Benefits

dumbbell hip thrust

Dumbbell Hip Thrusts are an excellent workout for increasing lower-body strength and sculpting those important glute muscles. This exercise works the gluteus maximus, hamstrings, and lower back. Including dumbbells enhances the difficulty, resulting in increased muscle development and overall strength.

A Dumbbell Hip Thrust is a lower-body exercise performed while seated on the ground with a dumbbell resting on your hips. This movement entails lifting your hips towards the ceiling while keeping your feet firmly planted.

In this guide, we’ll delve into how to perform the Dumbbell Hip Thrust correctly, offer expert tips, highlight common mistakes to avoid, explore the muscles it targets, discuss its benefits, and even present alternative exercises to keep your workouts fresh and exciting.

How To Do Dumbbell Hip Thrust

Let’s start with the basics. Follow these steps to perform the Dumbbell Hip Thrust effectively:

Set Up

Sit on the floor with your upper back against a bench or elevated surface. Your knees should be bent and your feet flat on the ground, hip-width apart. Place a dumbbell on your lap.


Roll the dumbbell down your thighs so it’s positioned on your hip creases. This is where you’ll apply resistance during the exercise.

Hip Thrust

Brace your core, press your heels into the ground, and lift your hips toward the ceiling. Squeeze your glutes at the top and ensure your upper body and thighs form a straight line.


Lower your hips back down to the starting position, maintaining control throughout the movement.


Perform the desired number of repetitions, focusing on a controlled motion.

Our Tips For Dumbbell Hip Thrust

Start with a Comfortable Weight

If you’re new to Dumbbell Hip Thrusts, it’s wise to initiate with a weight that feels comfortable. This allows you to focus on mastering the proper form without straining your muscles. As you become more proficient, gradually increase the weight to continue challenging yourself.

Maintain Proper Form

To perform Dumbbell Hip Thrusts safely and effectively, ensure your chin is tucked, your core is engaged, and your spine maintains a neutral position. This posture not only prevents undue strain on your neck and lower back but also optimizes muscle engagement in your glutes.

Mind the Speed

When executing Dumbbell Hip Thrusts, prioritize controlled movements. Avoid rushing through the exercise. Instead, concentrate on the deliberate contraction of your glutes at the pinnacle of the thrust. This controlled pace maximizes the effectiveness of each repetition and minimizes the risk of injury.

Common Dumbbell Hip Thrust Mistakes To Avoid

Using Too Much Weight

Avoid the urge to lift excessively heavy dumbbells. Going too heavy can compromise your form, leading to improper technique and an increased risk of injury. Start with a manageable weight and gradually progress to heavier ones as your form improves.

Neglecting Core Engagement

Skipping core engagement is a recipe for lower back discomfort. Your core plays a vital role in stabilizing your spine during the exercise. Keep those core muscles activated throughout the entire movement to protect your lower back.

Rushing Through Repetitions

Speeding through your hip thrusts might seem like a shortcut, but it diminishes their effectiveness. To maximize muscle engagement, maintain a controlled pace. Focus on the squeeze at the top of the movement and a slow, deliberate return to the starting position.

Dumbbell Hip Thrust Muscles Worked

Dumbbell Hip Thrusts primarily target the gluteus maximus, the largest muscle in your buttocks. This muscle is responsible for hip extension and thigh abduction, making it crucial for walking, running, and various lower-body movements. Additionally, the hamstrings and lower back muscles play a secondary role in this exercise.

During Dumbbell Hip Thrusts, the gluteus maximus contracts during hip extension, forcing the glutes to generate the force needed to lift the weight. The hamstrings also contribute to hip extension, working in tandem with the glutes. Meanwhile, the lower back muscles provide stability and support to your spine and pelvis.

Dumbbell Hip Thrust Benefits

how to do dumbbell hip thrust

Glute Development

Dumbbell Hip Thrusts are a glute-building powerhouse. They focus on the gluteus maximus, the largest muscle in your buttocks, leading to increased muscle activation and growth. This isn’t just about aesthetics; strong glutes have practical benefits, too. 

They provide the necessary strength for everyday activities like walking, running, and even climbing stairs. So, as you sculpt your backside, you’re also improving your overall functionality.

Increased Hip Extension and Power

Properly executed Hip Thrusts engage your core muscles and contribute to better posture and spinal health. By strengthening the muscles of your lower back, this exercise reduces the risk of lower back pain and injury. 

Furthermore, hip extension is vital for many lower-body activities, including running and jumping. Enhancing your hip extension through Dumbbell Hip Thrusts boosts lower body power and improves your athletic performance across various activities.

Improved Posture and Spinal Health

Maintaining good posture is essential for overall health and comfort. Dumbbell Hip Thrusts enhance your posture by strengthening the core muscles that support your spine. The exercise also targets the lower back muscles, contributing to spinal stability. Better posture not only prevents discomfort but can also make you appear more confident and poised. 

So, as you incorporate this exercise into your routine, you’re investing in both your physical well-being and your self-assured presence.

Alternatives To Dumbbell Hip Thrust

Barbell Hip Thrust

The Barbell Hip Thrust is a close cousin of the Dumbbell Hip Thrust but with added resistance. Instead of using dumbbells, you place a barbell across your hips. This variation allows you to load more weight, making it an excellent choice for those looking to take their glute training to the next level. It engages the glutes intensely and promotes substantial muscle growth.

Bulgarian Split Squats

Bulgarian Split Squats are a single-leg exercise that targets the glutes and improves balance and stability. To perform this exercise, you stand a few feet away from a bench or raised platform, resting one foot on it and the other extended behind you. 

As you lower your body into a squat position, your glutes are heavily engaged to support your movement. This exercise not only strengthens the glutes but also enhances lower-body coordination.


Deadlifts are a powerhouse compound movement that engages the glutes and several other muscle groups, including the hamstrings, lower back, and core. They are particularly effective at building overall strength and power. 

When executed correctly, deadlifts activate the glutes to extend the hips and bring the body upright. They’re versatile exercises that can be tailored to different fitness levels by adjusting the weight, making them a staple in strength training programs.

Bottom Line

Dumbbell Hip Thrusts are a versatile addition to your lower body workout routine. They target the glutes, hamstrings, and lower back, promoting strength and muscle tone. Adjust the weight, sets, reps, and rest periods as needed. Form is important, so remember to engage your core, maintain a straight back, and squeeze your glutes. Incorporating this exercise will help you build a stronger, more sculpted lower body.


Can I do Dumbbell Hip Thrusts without a bench or elevated surface?

Yes, you can perform them on the floor without an elevated surface for support.

How many sets and reps should I do for Dumbbell Hip Thrusts?

Start with 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions and adjust based on your fitness level and goals.

Can I do this exercise if I have lower back issues?

Consult with a healthcare professional before attempting this exercise if you have lower back concerns.

What’s the difference between Dumbbell Hip Thrusts and Barbell Hip Thrusts?

Barbell Hip Thrusts typically involve heavier weights and are often used for more advanced training.

Should I include this exercise in my leg day or glute-focused workout?

It’s ideal for a glute-focused workout but can complement your leg day routine.


  1. 5 Reasons to Hip Thrust. Retrieved from
  1. Importance of Good Posture. Retrieved from,common%20ailments%20and%20medical%20conditions.