My Master Thesis

Hip Thrust for Strength and Muscle Gains Single-Legged vs. Two-Legged Stance

Jaime Alnassim

Published: May 24, 2024

A man with a beard and a short haircut is standing and smiling in an office environment. He is wearing a white T-shirt with a small Adidas logo and dark pants. In the background, there are office chairs, a table with various items, and a large window with daylight streaming in. A television displays a tropical beach scene.

I finished my Master’s in June 2022 and never openly discussed my Thesis. While I was hoping for more people to join the study, I was doing my research during the pandemic when many gyms were closed during the holiday season. This made finding people to join the research hard, and I also had a few dropouts.

Despite the limited data set, my research was beneficial overall, but I feel bad about not sharing it publicly. Below is the abstract, and I will attach a link to download the PDF of my full Thesis.


Sports performance and body composition are driving factors shaping how people train within the gym. Despite the popularity of the hip thrust, it is still unknown whether a unilateral or bilateral stance would contribute to better overall results in strength and hypertrophy in the short term or in a Microcycle. This study determines whether the single-legged or two-legged version of the barbell hip thrust produces the most strength and muscle hypertrophy over a 12-week workout program. Initially, 8 participants were enrolled in this study, but due to the 2021 world climate and the holiday season, three participants did finish their 12-week program that focused on one type of hip thrust. Each participant performed a pre and post-5-rep max in both one-legged and two-legged hip thrusts. Each participant increased the max of their program-focused version of the hip thrust. Within-session and off-session training in sports, there is a limited amount of time allotted for workout programs. Knowing if an athlete would better perform with unilateral vs. bilateral exercises within the same movement pattern can assist with program goals of muscle hypertrophy and strength. While a small sample size, this study, showed what is possible for future research. Looking at internal vs. bilateral movements within the same movement pattern for short-term muscle hypertrophy and strength can help within-session and off-session training in sports. Part of the findings of this study was that each participant that finished the 12-week workout plan was able to show a different aspect of how one or two-legged hip thrust training could affect real-world lifters. Future research is still needed and should continue with a larger sample size.

Full PDF

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