The Donkey Kick: Learn This Exercise to Strengthen Your Glutes

It’s common knowledge that most women (and men) dream of having firmly toned buttocks. Well with the donkey kick workout you can literally turn your dreams into a reality. This is an age-old exercise designed to target all of your gluteal muscles.

Your gluteal muscles also known as your buttocks muscles are made up of a group of three muscles, namely the gluteus minimus, medius and maximus.

How to Do a Donkey Kick

The beauty of this exercise is that not only does it strengthen your glutes, but also your hamstring and leg muscles. Furthermore, depending on the variation of kick, can even tone your arms and deltoids thereby making it a multiple muscle targeting exercise.

What do you need in order to do this exercise you may ask?

  • The best part of this exercise is that you don t need any equipment, well maybe a towel after, because I have first-hand knowledge that you are going to be drenched in sweat after!
  • You will need a timer, or you could just use your phone, to time your workouts and breaks.
  • You need quite a lot of space for leg movement, especially when you’re doing the donkey kick circles.
  • It also should be noted that due to you being on your knees throughout this workout, it probably should be done on an exercise mat. A soft carpet will work just as well, just as long as you don’t get carpet burn.
  • Oh, and you’ll also need a whole lot of determination.

The good thing about the exercise below is that it literally anyone can do it, whether you’re a beginner or an expert, you can just adjust the workout to suit your needs.

10 Minute Donkey Kick Workout

Below is a video of a 10minute donkey kick workout for you to try. If you are new to donkey kicks be prepared because it is a tough workout! I can tell you that if you do this frequently, you will definitely see results fast!

1. Standard Basic Donkey Kick

  • Assume the standard position on the floor, on your hands and knees.
  • Your hands need to be flat down in front of your body and in line with your shoulders.
  • Your leg should be flat, with your knees in line with your hands.
  • When you lift your leg (kicking), make sure that you raise your leg higher than your head.
  • Try to ensure that your head is straight and preferably facing down, so that you don’t injure your neck.

2. Straight Leg Donkey Kick

  • In this exercise, you would assume the same basic position as you did in the first set.
  • Remember to make sure your hands and feet are in line.
  • This time straighten your lifting leg. It should be stretched out behind you and parallel to the floor.

3. Donkey Kick with a Flat Arm

  • Assume your standard donkey kick position, like in the first two exercises.
  • The variation in this exercise is that you are now moving your arm flat on the ground when you raise the alternate leg.
  • So basically with every lift up your leg, your alternate arm drops and with every drop of your leg, your alternate arm raises.
  • Remember when you lift your leg, you need to straighten it out horizontally.

4. Leg Outstretched and then Tilt

  • This exercise is a little different to your standard donkey kick.
  • You would need to keep one leg bent (like donkey kick) while stretching the other leg out perpendicular to your body.
  • Your arms should be clasped and raised straight above your head.
  • You would then bend your entire torso in the opposite direction of your outstretched leg.

5. Donkey Kick with a Kick

  • This time when assuming the normal donkey kick position, you need to lay your forearms flat on the mat, elbows down.
  • Then raise your leg (remember higher than your head) and kick out.

6. Donkey Kick with Side Kick

  • You would assume the standard donkey kick position hands flat down and legs in line.
  • Instead of kicking back like the standard donkey kick, you need to lift your leg to the side.
  • Your leg should only be lifted to about the height of your elbow.

7. Donkey Kick with Side Kick and Kick Out

  • This exercise is a carbon copy of the previous exercise, so your form would be exactly the same.
  • The variation in this exercise is, after lifting your leg to the side, you have to kick out to the side.
  • When you kick your leg out to the side try to stretch it as far as it can possibly go.

8. Donkey Kick Circle

  • You would assume the regular donkey kick straight leg position (exercise 2)
  • The variation is, when you lift your leg, you should move it almost in a circular motion, over your other leg and back again.
  • It’s important to lift your leg as high as possible.

9. Donkey Kick Elevated Leg Side Kick

  • This exercise is very similar to exercise number seven, so you would assume the same position.
  • The variation is that your leg has to be completely elevated off the ground when lifting and kicking out
  • Your elevated leg should never touch the ground during this exercise.

10.  Donkey Kick with Elevated Leg and Arm

  • This exercise is also very similar to exercise number two and you would assume the same position.
  • The variation comes in by using your arms. When you lift your leg, you also need to lift the opposite outstretched arm.
  • During this exercise your elevated arm and leg should never touch the ground.

11. Elevated Side Donkey Kick

  • This exercise is similar to exercise 6 & 7 so your position would be the same.
  • The variation is that you need to stretch your leg out to the side and lift.
  • Remember you shouldn’t drop your leg to the ground, it should always be elevated.

That’s it, eleven exercises that would take you approximately 10 minutes and give you a high-intensity workout. Note that for all of the above exercises you would do one leg for a period of 25 seconds, thereafter you need to rest for 5 seconds and then start with the other leg for 25 seconds.

Important Tips and Things to Note then Doing this Exercise

  • Each exercise is done for 25 seconds, in these 25 seconds you should do approximately 20 reps.
  • If you don’t feel the burn during this exercise (more especially with the elevated and side donkey kicks) then you probably aren’t doing the exercise correctly. You have to activate your glutes in order to tone and strengthen them.
  • Remember the most important thing about this exercise is the position of your body and level of elevation. If your body isn’t positioned correctly or if you aren’t lifting your leg up as instructed, then it’s senseless even doing this exercise due to your muscles not being worked properly. Always remember the position of your body trumps how many reps you do.
  • It’s very important to remember to warm up and cool down before and after doing this exercise as this will ensure that you don’t pull a muscle or injure yourself.
  • Also as a beginner, you may find it hard to do 20 reps in 25 minutes (that’s okay), Rome wasn’t built in a day. Start slow and work your way up. As your muscles build, so to will your speed.

I certainly hope that this article was beneficial to you and that you now know how to tone your buttocks. Also with so many variations and with this exercise routine being so high intensity, not only will you get the glutes of your dreams, but you are also likely to lose weight, so essentially it’s like killing two birds with one stone.

With the entire exercise routine only taking about 10 minutes you can literally get better buttocks, just by sacrificing 10 minutes of your day!