Hip Thrust On Smith Machine (How To Do It Like A Pro?)

Hip Thrust on Smith Machine (How to Do it Like a Pro?)

Last Updated on June, 2024

Are you struggling to get the most out of your hip thrust workouts? The Smith Machine, a common piece of gym equipment, can unlock new levels of glute activation in this popular exercise.

This blog post will guide you step-by-step on performing hip thrust on Smith Machine – from set-up and technique to understanding the muscles worked. Get ready for some serious booty-building!

Quick Summary

The Smith Machine offers convenience and versatility with its adjustable height and easy-to-use setup, allowing for progressive overload and isolation benefits.

Performing hip thrusts on a Smith Machine with proper form and technique is important to target and effectively strengthen the glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, and hip adductors.

Hip thrusts on a Smith Machine offer superior glute activation, enhanced athletic performance, back pain and poor posture prevention, and accessibility and isolation for targeted muscle work.

Understanding the Smith Machine

a man doing hip thrusts workout on smith machine

The Smith Machine, a popular piece of Ntaifitness Gym Equipment, is extensively used for hip thrust workouts. It offers convenience and versatility with its built-in adjustment features.

With the Smith machine, you can efficiently load plates to reach your desired weight without hassle.

One notable feature of this machine is its progressive overload capability. That means it allows users to gradually increase their resistance level in an organized manner – a key element for substantial muscle growth and improvement in strength over time. (1)

For beginners or those pressed for time, the regulated movements offered by the Smith machine make it an ingenious choice, even when barbells seem hard to handle or set up.

This equipment has drawn much enthusiasm because of its accessibility and isolation benefits too! No matter what kind of weights & weight sets you have at home or the gym, anyone can use this tool effectively as part of their hip thrust routine on any given day!

The Importance of Hip Thrusts

Hip thrusts are a powerful exercise crucial for building strength, speed, and power. Notably, on a Smith machine, these exercises provide continuous muscle tension and improve balance.

Strong glutes developed through hip thrusts also reinforce back muscles. This strength boost lessens the chance of injury while exercising or performing certain activities.

The beauty of doing hip thrusts on a Smith machine is that it’s beginner-friendly.

Traditional barbell or dumbbell workouts often add an element of difficulty in maintaining proper balance during lifts and squats.

With its fixed vertical pathway, the Smith machine removes this hurdle, providing ease and safety, especially for beginners struggling with weight stabilization.

a man doing hip thrust on a smith machine
credits: (docteur-fitness.com)

Performing regular hip thrusts can dramatically enhance your physical capabilities too! It promotes significant improvements in athletic performance, such as running faster or jumping higher.

Plus, it allows for effective progressive overload. In this important process, you gradually increase the stress placed upon your body during exercise training to achieve marked increases in resistance over time.

How to Perform Hip Thrusts on a Smith Machine?

Performing hip thrusts on a Smith machine is easy and effective, providing maximum glute activation. Continue reading to learn the proper technique and set up for this exercise.

Setting up Properly

Setting up properly for hip thrusts on a Smith machine is crucial to engage your muscles and prevent injuries effectively. Follow these steps:

  1. Find a comfortable weight bench; it will support your upper back during the exercise.
  2. Position yourself in front of the Smith machine. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart, just in front of your glutes.
  3. Adjust the bar on the Smith machine to hip level. The weighted barbell should align closely with your hips upon lifting.
  4. Place a padded barbell across your hips for comfort, especially when adding additional resistance.
  5. Settle your shoulder blades against the edge of the weight bench, ready for lifting.
  6. Ensure your heels are firmly planted on the floor and slightly raised off the ground.

Using the Bench

Using the bench is essential when performing hip thrusts on a Smith machine. It provides stability and support, allowing you to maintain proper form throughout the exercise. To start, position your upper back against the bench and place your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor.

Lean back into the bench as you lift your hips, creating a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. This position ensures that you’re engaging your glutes effectively during each repetition.

Make sure to lower the barbell in a slow and controlled manner, maintaining tension in your muscles throughout the movement. Using a bench, you can maximize the benefits of hip thrusts on a Smith machine while minimizing any risk of injury or improper technique.

Pushing and Extending

You must focus on pushing and extending to perform hip thrusts on a Smith machine. This involves the following steps:

  • Place your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor, with your heels under the barbell.
  • Engage your glutes and core muscles as you drive your hips upward, pushing against the weight of the barbell.
  • Extend your hips until your body forms a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
  • Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement for maximum contraction.
  • Lower the barbell back down controlled, returning to the starting position.

Returning the Bar

Returning the bar after completing a hip thrust on a Smith machine is as important as the lifting motion. Follow these steps to safely and effectively return the bar:

  • Slowly lower the barbell back down towards your hips.
  • Control the descent by engaging your core and using your glutes to resist the weight.
  • Keep your knees bent and maintain stability throughout the movement.
  • Avoid dropping the bar or letting it slam against the safety stops.
  • Once the bar is back at the starting position, prepare for your next rep.

Muscles Worked by Hip Thrusts on Smith Machine

muscles targeted by doing hip thrusts using smith machine

Hip thrusts on a Smith machine primarily target the glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, and hip adductors.


Hip thrusts on a Smith Machine are an excellent exercise for targeting and strengthening the glutes. The glute muscles, also known as the buttocks, play a crucial role in stabilizing the hips, improving posture, and preventing back pain.

You can effectively activate and isolate these muscles to achieve maximum strength and development by performing hip thrusts on a Smith Machine.

Stronger glutes enhance your physique and contribute to improved athletic performance and reduced risk of injury during various exercises and activities.

Whether you want to build stronger glutes for aesthetic or functional purposes, hip thrusts on a Smith Machine are essential to your workout routine.

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Hamstrings are an essential muscle group targeted by hip thrusts on a Smith machine. Neglecting to work out the hamstrings can lead to imbalances in the lower body, which may affect overall strength and stability.

Strengthening the hamstrings is crucial as it contributes to improved back muscle strength and reduces the risk of injuries like strains or tears.

By performing hip thrusts on a Smith machine, you effectively isolate and target your hamstrings, helping them develop strength and support your overall lower body fitness goals.


Hip thrusts on a Smith machine are an effective exercise for targeting the quadriceps. These large muscles in the front of your thighs play a crucial role in many lower-body movements, such as walking, running, and jumping.

By including hip thrusts in your workout routine, you can strengthen and tone your quadriceps, helping to improve your overall leg strength and stability. Working these muscles can also contribute to better posture and balance, making it easier to perform everyday activities.

So remember the quadriceps when performing hip thrusts on a Smith machine!

Hip Adductors

Hip adductors play a crucial role in hip thrusts on a Smith machine. These muscles, located on the inner thighs, help bring the legs together towards the body’s midline during the exercise.

You can improve hip stability and reduce the risk of low back pain by engaging and strengthening the hip adductors.

Weakness in these muscles can lead to imbalances and instability, so it’s important to include hip thrusts in your workout routine to target and strengthen the hip adductors effectively.

Benefits of Hip Thrusts on a Smith Machine

Hip Thrusts on a Smith Machine offer superior glute activation, enhanced athletic performance, back pain and poor posture prevention, and accessibility and isolation for targeted muscle work. (2)

Superior Glute Activation

Hip thrusts on a Smith machine are known for their superior glute activation. These exercises specifically target and engage the glute muscles, resulting in effective strength and muscle growth in that area.

Compared to other exercises, hip thrusts on a Smith machine provide an intense glute workout, ensuring maximum engagement and activation.

Neglecting these workouts can lead to missed opportunities for improved balance, power, strength, and speed.

Also, strong glutes contribute to stronger back muscles and reduce the risk of injury during workouts.

glute activation during workout

While using a barbell is often recommended for more natural movement and stability, the Smith machine still allows for effective glute isolation and activation.

Enhanced Athletic Performance

Hip thrusts on a Smith Machine are great for building strength and muscle in the glutes and hamstrings and can also greatly enhance athletic performance. Strong glutes improve balance, power, speed, and overall athletic ability.

Refrain from falling glute workouts to avoid decreased performance in sports and activities that require explosive movements like sprinting or jumping.

By incorporating hip thrusts into your training routine on a Smith Machine, you can target these key muscles and see significant improvements in your athletic performance over time.

One of the reasons why hip thrusts on a Smith Machine are so effective for enhancing athletic performance is because they allow for progressive overload. As you get stronger, you can gradually increase the resistance by adding weight plates to the barbell.

Prevention of Back Pain and Poor Posture

Hip thrusts on a Smith Machine are great for strengthening your glutes but can also help prevent back pain and improve posture.

Hip thrusts promote spinal alignment and stability by targeting your hips and lower back muscles.

Stronger glutes can support your back muscles during other exercises, reducing the risk of injury.

So, incorporating hip thrusts into your workout routine can have long-term benefits for strength and overall posture.

posture improvement and back pain

Accessibility and Isolation

The Smith Machine offers a high level of accessibility, making it a valuable option for performing hip thrusts. This is especially beneficial for individuals needing access to barbells or a wide range of gym equipment.

The adjustable height and easy-to-use nature of the Smith Machine make it suitable for people of different sizes and fitness levels.

In terms of isolation, using the Smith Machine allows for effectively targeting the glutes while minimizing involvement from other muscles.

This means you can focus on activating and strengthening your glutes without worrying about compensatory movements or imbalances.

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In conclusion, performing hip thrusts on a Smith Machine can be a highly effective way to target and activate the glutes while engaging other important muscle groups. The accessibility and ease of use make it a great option for beginners or those looking for an alternative to barbell hip thrusts.

The Smith Machine can build strength, improve athletic performance, and prevent back pain with proper form and technique.

So give it a try and start reaping the benefits of this powerful exercise machine!


To perform a hip thrust on a smith machine, begin by positioning yourself with your upper back against the barbell and your feet firmly on the ground. Then, push through your heels to lift your hips off the ground and squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement. Finally, lower back down and repeat.

The hip thrust primarily targets the gluteal muscles (gluteus maximus) but also engages other muscles, such as the hamstrings, quadriceps, and core stabilizers.

Using a smith machine for hip thrusts can provide stability and support compared to using free weights or other equipment. This can benefit beginners or anyone needing extra assistance in maintaining proper form during this exercise.

Yes, you can adjust the weight resistance when performing hip thrusts on a Smith Machine by adding weight plates onto the barbell. This will help to increase resistance and will allow you to adjust the weight as you become stronger and more comfortable with the movement.

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Linda Walter
I’m a fitness trainer and a health coach. My GOAL is to empower everyone to live a healthier life even after passing their prime. You can find more about me here.

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