Now it's time for a little booty shaming

Oh boy, look what I found in the #bodyshame by Personal Trainer files (not to mention slightly misguided)

“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with a flat as a pancake ass!!! - Do some squats woman!”

While thinking of my next blog topic, I was lucky enough to spot this 'bunch of ass' statement in my Facebook newsfeed. Now, this statement came from an Australian Personal Trainer who, only a week earlier made this comment in a video:

“Why do we need to judge other women for having work done … or judge other women period, it is our choice to do whatever it is we like to do”

What? ... wait, back the booty train up.

Am I reading this correctly? … it’s ok to choose whatever we want unless you have a flat ass, and then it’s ok to be judged?

Are you confused? I am.

Exhibit A : My "Flat as a pancake ass on a hot chick"

Exhibit A : My "Flat as a pancake ass on a hot chick"

As one of these so called ‘flat as a pancake’ ass types I felt a little peeved on behalf of my fellow women with “tiny ass-ets”. Ok, so mine’s not super flat, but it aint no twerk-o-matic ====>

I’m a Personal Trainer, a bloody good one, and I know a thing or two about ass rehab, ass hypertrophy …

… And asshats in general

I also know a thing or two about how the neuromuscular (that’s brain to muscle) connection works – or for some people, doesn’t work. 

And as someone with (but nearly out of the woods on) 17 years of chronic back pain, I also know a thing or ten about how the glutes can get shut down due to pain and that if we don’t do exactly the right things (or have the right, non-judgemental, holistic trainer) that we will struggle to get those glutes fired up no matter what we think we’re doing right or how many squats we bang out.

So there are really two points I need to make here?

  1. How can a trainer one minute send out a message of not judging women and then a week later judge a woman's ass
  2. Watch what you read on the internet, some people really do have their head up their ass about how to train glutes.

The woman's ass in question has a history and a story to tell. We'll never know what it was, but here are just a number of things that can "pancake" someone's butt

  • I have a friend who had a back injury and now has one numb ass-cheek.  Try squatting that bad boy into booty-ness when you can't even feel it. Maybe this woman has had some sort of spinal surgery or injury.
  • Some people have varying posture's which can affect the shape of their butt. In fact, I have a photo I took of a client 30 seconds apart where I corrected her posture - hey presto, instant butt lift.
  • Those with poor ankle, hip or spinal mobility will potentially struggle to squat their way to large glutes. Maybe this poor woman can't actually squat due to something like that - maybe her trainer hasn't helped her with other glute exercises.
  • Shit, perhaps her self-worth isn't actually tied up in her ass at all and she doesn't care.
  • Maybe this woman's story is similar to my own ...

... I tried and tried to get my glutes to work. I followed the theories, I took heed of my trainer (who had great glutes BTW), I followed the physio’s advice. I bridged my ass off at pilates until I could bridge no more, I squatted ass to grass #likeaboss and deadlifted like a champ during a Les Mills trainers fitness test – but still, no matter what, my back would be in spasm and no matter what I did, I could NOT feel my glutes that day or the next. No matter what exercise; clams, bridges, thrusts, squats, deadlifts, hacks … nada. I was walking around daily in back pain ... wishing for that elusive glute pain.

Then I got smarter than everyone else on the planet

I realised that my back pain was flaring up because of the heavy duvet on my bed. I shit you not. Every time I rolled over, it was like I was doing some sort of weird rotational weight lifting (of the wrong kind) in my cosy slumber. I won't overwhelm you with the biomechanics of what was going on.

Anywhooooo - for 8 long years, I had not realised that THIS was the defining factor in finally freeing my glutes to be the glutes they were born to be!

I hadn’t realised, because I was too busy listening to people who don't understand the holistic nature of ass mechanics. Look, all PT's should know how to hypertrophy a freaking muscle, but if that muscle aint' workin, your knowledge don't mean shit (intentional use of poor grammar)

Anyway I removed the duvet, the pain disappeared and within one week I was able to glute it #likeaboss (well at a rehab level anyway) without pain. So that meant I could actually keep going!

12 weeks later and I’m bridging, thrusting, squatting, deadlifting, walking and crosstraining with my “flat pancake ass” finally working. And of course, the next step will be that they can finally start to grow.

Now, I love glutes also and they really are a great muscle to really focus on for so many different reasons.

But that’s not really the point here is it?

The point is – a judgement call was made from a health and fitness professional about a stranger’s ass. Two, in fact: she judged her ass on how it looked and she made a misguided judgement call on what that woman "needed".

The point is that you have to put up with hearing and seeing this shit on the internet. You really could replace any judgetastic words in there:

“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with a fat ass!!!  - Do some cardio woman!”
“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with a lumpy ass!!!  - Do some detoxing woman!”
“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with a white ass!!!  - Do some tanning woman!”
“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with an ugly man!!!  - Do some dating woman!”

Well I say ...

“Nothing worse that a smokin' hot chick being told she needs to do something just to fit YOUR ideals!"

The 1950's called ... it wants it's attitude back.

And as for the phrase “Nothing worse” … hmm, let me count the things that might be worse than a flat ass.

“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick with terminal cancer”
“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick losing her smokin’ hot boyfriend in an accident”
“Nothing worse than a smokin' hot chick living in a world of bullshit judgement”
“Nothing worse than being a human in a war-torn country…?”

… I’m sure you get the idea and you can add many thousands of things to this list.

The lesson today is that  there really is nothing worse than simply being told “You’re not good enough” and nothing worse than being told to "just do squats". Come on, we're not new PT school graduates!

Anyway. I say you are good enough, from the front, back and all points in between. If you have a health or body goal that serves you in life – go and get it, and if you like a small butt, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. I like a good sized booty, but I'm not going to run around and body shame those that don't have one.

Now if you do want to follow a great non-judgemental glute role model, I recommend Bret Contreras (AKA The Glute Guy). He gets the message across is a great way. And he has a PhD in 'ass mechanics' so, I think I might just listen to him.

Jess Coate (IFBB Pro) also runs “Glute Camps” here in NZ. I don’t really know her and I’m not really a fan but I do respect that she knows her glute shit, and gets her message across without being a booty-shamer (well, I assume so anyway).

And as for neuromuscular and functional glute training, or going from flat to not so flat and actually getting them to work in some way – hit me up, that’s MY specialty and let me tell you something

... it doesn’t necessarily start with “Do some squats woman” - sheesh.

But hey change your glutes only if you want to of course, you get to have whatever ass YOU want – don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. 

I’m off to go shake what my momma gave me. Look at me sideways at the gym and I'll crush you with my mighty keyboard!

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