The gluteus medius or glute med for short is a muscle on the lateral portion of the hip that is crucial for a variety of activities of daily living. When we try to perform higher-level activities like weight lifting and sports activities, this muscle becomes even more important! Why? The glute med is so important because it is vital to our ability to stabilize ourselves during single leg balance. While we might not realize it, we live on 1 leg a lot. Walking, for instance, is the act of repeatedly balancing on a single leg over and over again. Strengthening the glute med can also help to resolve hip pain, low back pain, and even pain at your knee or foot! This article will take a closer look at what the glute med does as well as some of the best exercises for training this muscle.