I have been doing squats and lunges for a few weeks now, but I'm beginning to worry I'm doing them wrong. All the videos I've seen showing how to do them say I should feel it in my glueteus maximus, but the only place I feel sore or anything is my thighs.
Also, yesterday I added weights for the first time. And, omg! I can barely touch my thighs today they are so sore. Is that normal? Please help!!
I used to do squats/deadlifts/lunges on a regular basis (I run now so I've given up lower body lifting for a while). Anyway I never felt anything in my glutes either. That's not to say that you are doing them right/wrong, however.
Deadlifts - you pretty much know your form is wrong if you feel pain in your lower back. Otherwise chances are your form is good.
Squats - Watch how far you come down and how much you bring your knees forward.
Lunges - not sure you can really do lunges "incorrectly" per se.
There were times I lifted legs where I'd have some level of discomfort walking for up to 4 days afterward.
So my legs shouldn't be shoulder width apart?
'activate' your glutes in your warm-up, before you do anything else leg-related. (google that, 'glute activation' + 'warm up').
you could do glute bridges, or just lie on your belly and squeeze those suckers (in eg a superman). w glute bridges: experiment with where on your feet/foot (for singles) you place your weight to feel your glutes working - heel, midfoot.. you could find yourself emphasizing your hamstring, otherwise.
squatting: put your weight on your heel.
when doing split squats or lunges, go really deep into the squat (true for all actually).
rear lunges are good. co-contraction lunge is good.
for all - pay attention. feel what's working - top glutes? mid-glute? quads? shift your weight/adjust to correct.
even: put your hand on your butt to remind yourself where it is.
Your feet should be shoulder width or wider depending on your proportions and bar position.
I keep my feet wider than shoulder width when I do squats. If you want to feel it in your glutes, squat as deep as you can, and squeeze your glutes on the way up. Also, try stiff-legged deadlifts.
Allowing your knees to cave in or out (i.e. not track over your toes) would be incorrect. Leaning your torso forward too much would be as well.
I want to target my oboes and clarinets.
I don't really like this exercise. I think most people are fine with just a standard deadlift. If you have to do an assistance, I'd recommend the Romanian deadlift over the Stiff-legged deadlift, since it's easier to keep your spine in a good position.
is that a smith machine? Smith machine squats are not good for you. The movement is unnatural, and it puts undue stress on your knees and lower back.