While a squat may look more “hip dominant” or “quad dominant” the squat does not exclusively train the quads, hamstrings or glutes. All of the muscles of the lower body are activated together to extend the hips and knees regardless of how the squat looks or the amount of torque that is placed on the joints.
Considering this, do squats work glutes or quads?
New research reveals that squats may not activate this muscle group as much as trainers say. There's a reason squats are hailed as the king of all lower-body moves: They recruit a ton of big, calorie-burning muscles, like your glutes and quadriceps. But they may not give you a complete lower-body workout.
Do squats work the glutes?
Air squats are great for beginners and to tone, but if you've been squatting for more than six months and haven't noticed your butt getting bigger, it's because you need to add weight. Your glutes are just muscles, and you have to add resistance in order for them to grow, the same way you would with any other muscle.