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Glute exercises are important for both lower body and full-body strength. Your glute muscles1 (including the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus) are responsible for hip extension, counteracting hip flexion, and leg extension and rotation. Basically, your glutes help your legs move through your daily life.
Although free weights are an excellent choice to get started on glute strength, if you’re looking to add a glute machine to your collection of the best home gym equipment, look no further. Your friends at Garage Gym Reviews have tested and ranked the best glute machines to target booty gains.
For all the equipment we test, our expert product testers rate a variety of categories on a 1-to-5-star scale according to our in-depth fitness equipment testing methodology, including:
- Durability: Does the equipment feel stable and have the potential to last a long time?
- Versatility: Can it be used for a variety of different exercises (not just for glutes)?
- Footprint: How much space in your home gym is required?
- Value: Is the price tag worth what you get?
8 Best Glute Machines
- Best Overall Glute Machine: Freak Athlete Nordic Hyper GHD
- Best Cable Machine for Glutes: REP FT-5000 Functional Trainer
- Best Reverse Hyper for Glutes: Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer
- Best Nordic Bench for Glutes: Shogun Nord-Ex
- Best Smith Machine for Glutes: Force USA G3
- Best Leg Press for Glutes: Titan Leg Press Hack Squat Machine
- Best Portable Machine for Glutes: MaxPRO
- Best Resistance Bands for Glutes: Mark Bell Sling Shot Hip Circle
Best Overall Glute Machine: Freak Athlete Hyper GHD
Good for: Home gym folks who want tons of posterior chain functionality in one compact machine
- 6-in-1 workout functionality
- Nordic hamstring curls
- Glute-ham raise
- Sit-up bench
- Reverse hypers
- Back extensions
- Hip thrusts
- Vertical storage
- Lightweight, 105-lb design
Pros & Cons
- 100-day money back guarantee
- Priced under $1,000
- Perform Nordic hamstring curl progressions
- Pre-orders only
- Welds are just OK
- Subpar transport wheels
OK, folks, our top pick for the best overall glute machine is the Freak Athlete Hyper GHD. It makes it to the top of this list because it features six machines in one—all of which target your backside.
Which six booty-building machines does it include, you ask? Well, this Freak Athlete machine packs a serious punch with a glute ham developer, Nordic bench, 45-degree back extension, reverse hyper, hip thrust, and sit-up bench.
GGR founder and expert product tester Coop Mitchell says, “The functionality exceeds the cost.” Coop gives this machine a 4.5-out-of-5-star rating for overall value in our Freak Athlete Nordic Hyper Review. Although he does warn that the quality doesn’t match the functionality, meaning it’s not constructed from the best (or most sturdy) materials, it offers unmatched training options and variety.
While the sit-up bench won’t get your glutes flexing, the rest of the modalities provide essential glute training movements (and typically ones you can only find in commercial gyms). Overall, the Nordic Hyper GHD earns a 4-out-of-5-star rating for workout experience.
With six machines in one, Coop didn’t expect all six functionalities to work perfectly. The Nordic bench, 45-degree back extension, hip thrust, and sit-up board work as they should. The glute ham raise (GHD) function is OK, but doesn’t offer the same stability as a stand-alone GHD machine.
RELATED: Glute Exercises For At-Home Training
But where the machine falls short is the reverse hyper movement. Unless you’re really short, you won’t be able to get a full range of motion or load the reverse hyper like a traditional weighted pendulum (you can only load it with a resistance band). We don’t recommend buying this specifically for the reverse hyper function.
|56″ L x 23″ W x 22″ H
|Glute ham developer, Nordic bench, back extension, reverse hyper,
hip thrust, and sit-up bench
Best Cable Machine for Glutes: REP FT-5000 Functional Trainer
Good for: Performing lower body compound exercises and glute isolation exercises
Best Cable Machine
- Frame constructed with 11-guage steel
- Chip-resistant powder coating
- Dual 224-pound weight stacks
- Multi-grip pullup/chin-up options
- Ships partially assembled
- Lifetime frame warranty
Pros & Cons
- Multi-grip pullup/chin-up grip options
- Ships partially assembled
- Lifetime frame warranty
- Dual 224-lb weight stacks
- There have been some complaints of inconsistent craftsmanship
- Starting weight may be too heavy for some isolation exercises
Cable machines are an excellent choice for hitting glutes. The adjustable weight stacks make it easy to load up the machine for heavy cable goblet squats, lunges, and deadlifts as well as lighter accessory exercises like pull-throughs, glute kickbacks, and hip abductions. And if you’ve only performed those types of exercises with free weights, we have a complete cable leg workout guide with step-by-step instructions.
So, now that you know all the glute-focused cable exercises you can perform (in addition to the endless upper body and core exercises you can do on cable machines), it’s time to divulge why our expert product testers selected the REP FT-5000 as our top pick for best functional trainers for home gyms.
Firstly, overall value on this REP machine is sort of unbeatable, which is why it earns a 4.5-out-of-5-star rating in this category. Cable machines are typically reserved for commercial gyms, but manufacturers like REP are finding ways to make cable machines relatively affordable for home use. REP FT-5000 is priced at $2,499 and comes with a lifetime frame warranty and REP offers free shipping (which is a huge deal for an exercise machine that weighs nearly 900 pounds).
Glute enthusiasts be warned: This cable machine comes with two D-handles. For the best outcome training your glutes on a cable machine, you’ll want an assortment of attachments including the ropes, ankle cuff (or two), and a straight bar that can attach lengthwise to both carabiners. These attachments make it possible to perform pull-throughs, squats, hip abductions, and a variety of deadlift variations.
On the REP website, you’ll be able to find cable attachment packages for all your training needs. To read more details about this highly-rated machine, check out our REP FT-5000 Functional Trainer review.
|85.5” H x 58” W x 36” D
|224 lbs (2:1 ratio)
|Cable squat, lunge, deadlift, pull-through, kickbacks,
Best Reverse Hyper for Glutes: Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer
Good for: Folks who need low-impact methods to building posterior chain strength
Best Reverse Hyper
- A standalone glute ham developer (GHD) and reverse back extension
- High-density foam pads with a durable vinyl casing
- Hyper strap that doubles as a squat belt
Pros & Cons
- High-density foam pads
- Included hyper strap
- Limited lifetime warranty on welds and frame
- Budget friendly
- 2-in-1 machine saves space
- Free shipping
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Standard collars do not fit pendulum so weights may shift
- Some felt the foam was too firm
- Several reports of items arriving damaged
The Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer takes everything our product testers appreciate about a traditional reverse hyper and uses the same footprint to incorporate a GHD machine, too. This means you’ll have two glute-strengthening options in one machine.
The reverse hyper is a well-known machine among strength and conditioning professionals, sports teams, powerlifters, and strongman competitors. It was invented by Louie Simmons, founder of the infamous Westside Barbell powerlifting gym. The idea of the reverse hyper is to keep the upper body still (and not loaded with weight) while targeting the gluteus maximus, hamstrings, and erector spinae through a pendulum-style extension.
RELATED: Best Powerlifting Workout
Coop notes in the Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer review that this machine isn’t the most high-end unit he’s tested, “But it gets the job done,” he says. And for a price just over $1,000 (compared to other brands priced at several thousand dollars), it’s a no-brainer when it comes to value, earning a 4-out-of-5-star rating in this category.
You’ll also be happy to know it offers tons of stability, earning a 4.5-star rating for durability and construction. It weighs almost 300 pounds, which might not be easy to move around your home gym but it will provide a sturdy machine that won’t rock or shake during even the heaviest reverse hypers. “More steel means more stability,” says Coop.
|74” L X 47” W X 42” H
|Reverse hyper and glute ham developer
Best Nordic Bench for Glutes: Shogun Nord-Ex
Good for: Folks seeking a two-in-one Nordic bench machine with high-end finishes
Best Nordic Bench
- 2 machines in 1
- Nordic curl bench and back extension machine
- Fully adjustable to fit most people
- Compact footprint at 41” x 25”
- 11-gauge carbon steel main frame
- Custom-molded self-skinning polyurethane foam
- 35- to 55-degree adjustments for back extension
- 15, 30, or 45 degrees for assisted Nordic curls
Pros & Cons
- Adjustable angles for back extension and assisted Nordic
- High-quality, heavy-duty materials
- Compact footprint
- Able to store with caster wheels and handle
- Innovative design
- Free shipping in the Continental U.S.
- Ships in 3 separate boxes
If you’re looking for a high-quality Nordic bench, the Shogun Nord-Ex is our go-to choice. It’s super-stable, offers top-notch construction, is adjustable for different heights, and has a compact footprint.
The Shogun Nord-Ex earns a 4.5-out-of-5-star rating in both the stability and construction categories with a heavy steel frame, textured powder coat, and high-density molded foam. Additionally, GGR founder Coop Mitchell mentions the adjustable pop-pins are metal, not plastic, which will offer longevity to those moving parts.
While the Shogun is like the Cadillac of Nordic benches, it also earns high scores for functionality. Coop gives the functionality of the Nord-Ex a perfect 5-star rating because you’ll be able to perform progressive Nordic curls (at 15-, 30-, or 45-degree angles) which is essential to strength training beginners and experienced lifters alike. The Nordic curl is no walk in the park, and we advise you to take advantage of the highest 45-degree angle upon first use.
RELATED: How To Do Hamstring Curls at Home
You’ll also be able to perform hyperextensions at a variety of angles running from 35 to 55 degrees. Both exercises are challenging with bodyweight alone, or can be scaled up with dumbbells and resistance bands for added intensity.
Both exercises are excellent for activating glute muscles and coordinating proper function of your hamstrings and glutes, which is essential for your day-to-day activity. You can read more about the machine and the two exercises in our detailed Shogun Nord-Ex review.
|41” L x 25” W
|Progressive Nordic curls, hyperextensions
Best Smith Machine for Glutes: Force USA G3
Good for: Home gym owners seeking tons of variety without sacrificing a traditional weight lifting experience
Best Smith Machine
- All-in-one home gym machine
- Functional trainer and squat rack
- Smith machine
- 2:1 pulley ratio
- 14 attachments included
- Even more add-ons available for purchase
Pros & Cons
- Barbell or smith machine training
- Cable machine with two pulleys
- Multi-grip pull up bar
- Countless exercise selection
- Includes variety of attachments
- Steel gauge not disclosed
- Entire unit weight limit under 1,000 lbs
- 772-lb smith machine and chin up weight limit
The Force USA G3 is more than just a Smith machine. It’s a power rack, functional trainer, and Smith machine. Plus, you can use the G3 for chin-ups and landmine exercises (a low-hold landmine squat is quite the glute-burner), and the dedicated stirrup station can be used as a suspension trainer.
The G3 could make your glute goals come true with how much variation you’ll have. With this all-in-one design, you’ll have the ability to perform heavy loads on a back squat in the power rack, hip thrusters in the Smith machine, cable pull-throughs on the functional trainer, and Bulgarian split squats on the suspension trainer.
RELATED: How to Squat Heavier
Needless to say, the G3 earns a 4.5-star rating when it comes to versatility. “There’s a ton you get with this rack,” says Coop Mithchell, GGR founder and product tester. “Even the racks most similar to this don’t compare.”
And some of the best exercises for glutes take a little more creativity, like the Smith machine donkey kickback, which can be achieved by setting up in the quadruped position and “kicking” upward on the Smith machine bar.
And for how many lower body and glute exercises you can perform on the G3, it has a reasonable price tag of $1,999. We know that price isn’t cheap per se, but what you get makes this Force USA machine earn a 5-out-of-5-star rating for value.
To learn more about the incredible value of this all-in-one machine, read our in-depth Force USA G3 review.
|78” W x 60.5” D x 87” H
|992 lbs (unit), 772 lbs (Smith machine and chin-up bar), 2,000 lbs (cables)
|Squat, lunge, deadlift, hip thrust, donkey kicks, glute kickback,
hip abduction, pull-throughs
Best Leg Press for Glutes: Titan Leg Press Hack Squat Machine
Good for: General lower body strength training with a focus on quads and glutes
If your home gym has the space for a leg press machine, this Titan Leg Press Hack Squat Machine might be the leg press of your dreams. It not only offers a traditional leg press option, but you’ll be able to do hack squats, too. While the leg press and the hack squat primarily target the quads, your glute muscles will also get worked in both exercises (in addition to your hamstrings).
Buying a leg press machine for your home gym might seem a little excessive, but it can be an ideal option for anyone who wants to train heavy loads without bearing weight on the spine. You will no doubt get your glutes worked by using this Titan Leg Press Hack Squat Machine, but be aware this is not a glute-specific machine that isolates the backside.
RELATED: Leg Press Workout
That said, if a leg press machine (plus a hack squat option) suits your specific training needs, Titan offers a pretty darn good option. It’s priced under $2,000, which we think is a killer deal for this type of machine, and it’s well constructed. Both categories earn the Titan Leg Press Hack Squat 4.5-out-of-5-star ratings.
GGR founder and product tester, Coop Mitchell is impressed with the overall design. “Titan included thoughtful details like bronze bushings to prevent metal-on-metal wear over time,” says Coop.
The downside to this machine is the size: 325 pounds and 7 feet in length. Because of this, the Titan earns a 3.5-out-of-5-star rating in the footprint and portability category. It may be 7 feet long, but it’s still less space than owning a stand-alone hack squat and leg press. You can read more details in our Titan Titan Leg Press Hack Squat review.
|84” L x 40” W x 53” H
|Leg press, hack squat
Best Portable Machine for Glutes: MaxPRO
Good for: Folks who travel often or have limited space for a home gym
- All-in-one machine that works different muscle groups
- Lightweight at 9 lbs
- Small footprint at 16" L x 10" W x 4" H
- Produces resistance up to 300 lbs
Pros & Cons
- Small footprint
- Produces resistance up to 300 lbs
- Pricey for a small piece of equipment
- Sub-par accessories
- Compatible app is not streamlined
If you’re someone who needs the best portable home gym option to train glutes, the MaxPRO portable cable workout machine might be your best bet. The MaxPRO is not just for your glutes either, it can provide a full-body workout in the same way a cable machine or functional trainer can with the ability to be used on the floor or mounted on the wall.
You can expect to load up movements like squats and deadlifts with up to 300 pounds of resistance. You’ll even be able to perform single leg deadlifts, lunges, and floor exercises like kickbacks. While you might have to get creative to perform a hip thrust, overall this MaxPRO earns a 4.5-star rating for versatility.
As far as footprint and portability go, this machine earns a 5-out-of-5-star rating. It’s under 10 pounds and under 3 feet long. It also folds in half to make transporting it around even easier.
Besides the fact it’s super compact, it differs from a traditional cable machine because it doesn’t provide eccentric resistance. The MaxPRO instead only provides concentric resistance. You can think of concentric as the upward movement of the squat, not the eccentric lowering portion.
OG product tester and founder of GGR, Coop Mitchell notes, “I wish the MaxPRO had both eccentric and concentric capabilities, but I still enjoy it and use it more than I expected to.”
The price is what may make you hesitate to add the MaxPRO to your cart. The basic package with just the cable machine starts at $1,199. It’s worth mentioning that at the time of writing this roundup, it was marked down to $649. Even so, when it comes to value the MaxPRO earns a 3.5-out-of-5-star rating.
Folks choosing this option likely travel a ton and need something that offers quite a bit of resistance in a compact area. You can read our in-depth MaxPRO Smart Connect review for even more details.
|Starts at $1,199
|32.3” L x 3.6” W x 4.11” H
|Squat, lunge, deadlift, kickbacks, donkey kicks,
Best Resistance Bands for Glutes: Mark Bell Sling Shot Hip Circle
Good for: Anyone looking for superior glute activation with just a resistance band
Best Resistance Bands
- Flat surface designed to fit above the knee
- Offers level 2 resistance
- Activates glutes and lower-body muscles
- Strengthen hip abductors and external rotators
- Claimed to not slide or slip during use
Pros & Cons
- Reported to stay in place
- Sizing may be off
- Not enough resistance for elite athletes
There is a reason the Mark Bell Sling Shot Hip Circle is the GGR top pick for best resistance bands for glutes—it offers great glute and hip abductor activation on squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts, clam shells, monster walks, and kickbacks.
While the Hip Circle mini loop band may not be an actual exercise machine, it’s the ideal gym accessory for anyone chasing bigger glutes. And I can personally attest to the fact that the Hip Circle is one of the best resistance bands to use for glute work. But why? Most other bands are made from a thin plastic or latex, which breaks over time. The Hip Circle is made from soft, woven fabric that doesn’t slip, slide, or pinch your skin.
It also offers more resistance than the typical plastic-style mini loop resistance band, which is ideal if you’re looking for muscle growth on your backside. I give the Hip Circle a 4-out-of-5-star rating in the resistance category. I dock a point because the strong resistance won’t be ideal for all folks, especially beginners. I use the Hip Circle to make some of the best at-home glute exercises (like glute bridges, clamshells, donkey kicks, and hip thrusts) more challenging.
And if you’re on a budget I have good news for you: This mini loop band is only $20 on Amazon. While that may seem like a lot for one little band, if you’re serious about booty gains this is the ultimate option. The Hip Circle earns a 4.5-out-of-5-star rating for overall value. It will also last you a super long time. I’ve used mine for over six years and it just recently started showing wear with a bit of rippling on the elastic (but it still works as it should).
|26” (M), 30” (L), 32” (XL)
|Squat, deadlift, good morning, clamshells, fire hydrants, kickbacks, hip thrusts
Other Glute Machines We Tested
- TRX Home Suspension Trainer: The TRX suspension trainer makes an ideal addition to squat racks and functional trainers, but it didn’t make it to this list because our experts think glute-specific training may feel limited on the TRX alone.
- Vulcan Kraaken-Hyper Machine: The Vulcan is a combination unit of a reverse hyper and GHD machine. While it’s a super solid piece of equipment, the Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer machine offers better value and offers the same combination.
How We Picked and Tested
The expert product testers at GGR are industry experts ranging from certified personal trainers to Olympic-level athletes. Our collective experience helps inform our product testing experience and allows us to appropriately rate equipment on a 1-to-5-star rating (from the best cardio machines to the best strength equipment) across a variety of categories.
For this roundup of best glute machines, here are some of the things our experts considered:
- Overall value: Home gym machines that offer quality construction, versatility, and a fair price point earn high scores in the value category. Machines with low value scores are typically offering too little to the average home gym owner for the asking price.
- Stability: If a machine is stable (meaning it does not rock or shake in use) it earns a high score. Low scores are reserved for machines that have a ton of unnecessary movement while in use.
- Ergonomics and adjustability: High scores are given to machines with adjustability options so you can adjust the machine not only based on the movement you want to perform but also your height or leg length. For a machine to score low here, it doesn’t feature any or minimal adjustability for optimal ergonomics.
- Workout experience: If a machine is enjoyable to use and functions the way it should, that warrants high scores. Low scores express the opposite experience.
- Footprint and portability: Since machines take up more space than a set of dumbbells, high scores are given to machines that have a reasonable footprint or are easy to move around. Low scores are given to bulky machines with no ability to transport.
Benefits of Strengthening Glute Muscles
Glutes are often an overlooked and underdeveloped muscle group. A balanced workout routine—regardless of your booty goals—should consist of glute muscle activation. And here’s why:
Glute Strength Helps with Daily Function
Your glutes should activate every time you stand up from a seated position, go for a run, and walk up stairs or up a hill. And not only that, your glute muscles are responsible for supporting the pelvis bone, bracing the torso, and stabilizing the femur (especially while standing on one leg).
Needless to say, your glutes play a vital role in moving through your day-to-day activities. Keeping your glutes strong with glute-specific exercises may help the longevity of participating in your favorite hobbies and sports.
Stronger Glutes May Alleviate Pain
Along with your glutes assisting with daily function, there is evidence to suggest that strong glutes may help you avoid chronic pain. A 2015 study published in Journal of Physical Therapy Science2 found that glute exercises paired with lumbar stabilization was an effective pain management solution in patients with chronic lower back pain.
Additionally, the British Journal of Sports Medicine3 published a systematic review in 2012 concluding that there is enough evidence to support that underdeveloped glutes have a correlation with patellofemoral pain syndrome (aka knee pain).
Buying Guide for the Best Glute Machines
Here are a few points to consider before you decide on the best glute machine for your gym:
Your home gym space is limited, which means it’s essential that you choose equipment that can do more than one thing. According to GGR writer and certified personal trainer Matt Dustin, choosing equipment that is versatile enough to target different muscles is key.
Matt’s suggestion? A Smith machine or functional trainer since those machines allow for full-body workouts. “Some machines are only built for a specific glute exercise—like the hip thrust machine—and if space is limited, you’ll get more value out of something that has multiple uses,” says Matt.
You may notice that many of the best glute machines our experts tested and ranked are more expensive than buying weight plates or dumbbells. Gym machines are typically more expensive because there are more moving parts to manufacture and more engineering for the brand to design it originally.
If you’re on a tight budget resistance bands, dumbbells, and a barbell go a long way to build glute size and strength. Nothing beats the basic squats, lunges, deadlifts, and bodyweight glute accessories (like clamshells, glute bridges, kickbacks, and hip thrusts).
Footprint and Portability
Before committing to any new piece of fitness equipment, measure your space! The dedicated floorspace of some of the best gym machines is far greater than the best adjustable dumbbells.
Consider your home gym floor space and ceiling height. Some of the functional trainers and squat racks in this roundup require a decent amount of overhead height.
And one more thing: If you’re looking for a functional trainer, make sure you have enough room around the machine to use the pulleys without being crowded by other equipment or a wall.
Best Glute Machines: FAQs
What is the best machine to grow glutes?
While there are a variety of ways to grow your glutes, the Garage Gym Reviews expert product testers picked the Freak Athlete Nordic Hyper GHD machine as the best overall glute machine. Other top selections include:
-Best Cable Machine for Glutes: REP FT-5000 Functional Trainer
-Best Reverse Hyper for Glutes: Bells of Steel Reverse Hammer
-Best Nordic Bench for Glutes: Shogun Nord-Ex
-Best Smith Machine for Glutes: Force USA G3
-Best Leg Press for Glutes: Titan Leg Press Hack Squat Machine
-Best Portable Machine for Glutes: MaxPRO
-Best Resistance Bands for Glutes: Mark Bell Sling Shot Hip Circle
What is the most effective glute workout?
The most effective glute workout consists of both isolation exercises and compound exercises (multi-joint) to ensure you can stimulate the glute muscle alone and coordinate glute muscle activation in conjunction with your other muscles (including core, lower back, hamstrings, and quads).
What program grows glutes the fastest?
Programs that help you increase size and strength of your glutes typically balance near-maximal strength on compound exercises like squats and deadlifts with high repetition work on isolation exercises like glute kickbacks and glute bridges.
- Elzanie A, Borger J. Anatomy, Bony Pelvis and Lower Limb, Gluteus Maximus Muscle. [Updated 2023 Apr 1]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-.
- Jeong UC, Sim JH, Kim CY, Hwang-Bo G, Nam CW. The effects of gluteus muscle strengthening exercise and lumbar stabilization exercise on lumbar muscle strength and balance in chronic low back pain patients. J Phys Ther Sci. 2015;27(12):3813-3816.
- Barton CJ, Lack S, Malliaras P, Morrissey D. Gluteal muscle activity and patellofemoral pain syndrome: a systematic review. Br J Sports Med. 2013;47(4):207-214.
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