If you’re looking for some inspiration for your next glute workout, the B Stance Hip Thrust is certainly worth considering.
A subtle twist on regular hip thrusts, the staggered foot placement allows for effective unilateral training of the glutes and legs.
It’s also sometimes referred to as “kickstand” hip thrusts, which is a good way of understanding the purpose of the supporting leg… as a tool to provide stability and balance during the movement (more than you’d get from a single leg hip thrust at least). The result is the ability to load more weight, which helps boost muscle gains and hypertrophy.
In this exercise guide, we outline how to perform B Stance Hip Thrusts correctly, the muscles worked, benefits, potential alternatives and ultimately who this movement is best suited to.
How To Do B Stance Hip Thrusts
To perform B Stance Hip Thrusts:
- Start by getting into the regular position for a hip thrust with your upper back resting on a bench, knees bent and glutes resting on the floor.
- Plant one foot on the floor and use the other foot as a support (either extending in front on your heel, or behind on the balls for your feet).
- Push through the foot on the floor to lift your hips off the floor so your quads and stomach are parallel. Try and push through your heel to really focus the movement on your glutes.
- To add resistance, hold a barbell, Smith Machine bar, dumbbells or kettlebell on your hips during the movement.
- We would tend to opt for half the weight of your regular hip thrust if you are using additional resistance for your first workout to see how you get on.
There are two ways to stagger your stance for a hip thrust. The first involves having a straighter supporting leg, whereby your heel is anchoring the floor. The second involves bending your supporting leg more, so it is closer to your body and whereby your toes are anchoring the floor. Either method achieves the same outcome, so try both and see which one feels more comfortable.
The B Stance Hip Thrust works the glutes and hamstrings. Your quads, hip adductors, and core will also be engaged during the movement.
Benefits of B Stance Hip Thrusts
Load More Weight
The main benefit of using this staggered B Stance compared to just a single leg hip thrust, is the ability to load more weight.
Balance often becomes the limiting factor in single leg exercises, not strength… so if muscle development is your main goal, the staggered stance helps you load more weight safely.
Unilateral training is so beneficial because it helps identify any muscular imbalances… which can lead to injury.
The B Stance Hip Thrust allows you to train each side of your body separately (roughly 80-90% of the lift will be performed by the targeted leg), which will quickly highlight if one side is weaker than the other.
We discussed in our guide on B Stance Deadlifts that if you do spot any muscular imbalances, you want to train your weaker side first during your workouts, and only match what the weaker side can do with your stronger side… to avoid the imbalance growing.
Maximize Access to Lighter Weights
Another useful benefit of the staggered B Stance is when you only have access to a small range of weights… for example, when you’re exercising at home.
It can be hard to increase the weight between sets and workouts effectively to really keep your muscles challenged.
But by adopting the B Stance, the same weight is now mainly being lifted by just one side of your body… so will be much harder. This might help keep your glute workout challenging for a while longer.
Works with Any Equipment
Another reason we like the B Stance is that it works with whatever equipment you prefer using. You can adapt your Smith Machine hip thrusts to use a B Stance, or use a barbell, dumbbells or bands.
It also works with any dedicated home glute machines and equipment.
If you’re using free weights in the gym, you likely won’t be able to lift as much as with a regular hip thrust, so start much lighter and slowly work your way up in resistance (a good starting point would be to half the amount of resistance you usually lift for a hip thrust and take it from there).
B Stance Hip Thrust Alternatives
If the B Stance Hip Thrust just isn’t working for you, here are some other alternatives to try. The first two alternatives are great for unilateral training too.
Single Leg RDLs
Single Leg RDLs (Romanian Deadlifts) are a fantastic way to build unilateral strength in your glutes and hamstrings.
They require a good level of balance and stability… and even just as a bodyweight exercise can be tricky.
If you want to increase difficulty, holding a pair of dumbbells is a simple way to create resistance.
You could also opt a B Stance for RDLs too.
Single Leg Glute Bridges
Glute Bridges are very similar to hip thrusts, but involve laying flat on your back with your knees bent. By activating the glutes, you lift your hips off the ground.
This is perhaps more beginner-friendly than hip thrusts, so can be more suited for some.
The single leg variation will be trickier and a great way to challenge your balance during the movement.
Good Mornings are another effective way to engage the glutes and hamstrings.
Good Mornings involve hinging at the hips with straight legs and back, to bring your upper body towards the floor.
As a bodyweight movement, we find this is a really simple way to instantly activate the glutes and is gentler on the knees due to hinging at the hips.
Ultimately, B Stance Hip Thrusts are more than just another exercise variation. They make it easy to include unilateral training in your glute workouts and allow you to load more weight than a single leg hip thrust would, therefore being better suited to those looking to focus on muscle development and hypertrophy.
The ability to focus more on load and less on stability means B Stance Hip Thrusts are worth considering if you want to challenge your glutes, whether that’s at home or in the gym.
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