Resistance Bands: The Anytime, Anywhere Multi-Exercise Workout
By Lisa Payne
In this article:
Half of sticking to a workout plan is simply about convenience. A gym that’s too far, too expensive or too intimidating isn’t going to motivate you to work out. Instead, look to your humble abode as your very own personal gym and invest in some low-cost home fitness equipment like resistance bands to avoid any inconveniences and to finally get in shape.
Here are 5 reasons you’d benefit from a resistance band workout.
Resistance bands give you the freedom to design workouts that focus not only on individual muscle groups but also your whole body at once. This is perfect for anyone who’s short on time and needs to get it all in, or for someone who’s trying to lose weight, work on endurance or improve cardio.
With resistance bands, you never have to duplicate a workout. In addition to there being numerous exercise options, you can use the band independently, with a door anchor or while holding free weights to challenge your body in different ways.
One of the key benefits of training with resistance bands is that there is very little risk of injury. Punch, stretch, push or pull and these bands go the distance with you.
Whether for work or leisure, travel shouldn’t be a hall pass for missing workouts. Even with minimal hotel space, resistance bands allow you to get in a solid workout and still make it to everything on your schedule.
Get your heart rate up by trying exercises that challenge both your muscles and your cardiovascular system. For example, loop your resistance band underneath both feet, hold both handles at shoulder level and do jumping jacks. Stay hydrated with water and electrolytes for extra-long cardio band workouts.
Taking into consideration all the benefits of resistance bands, try this beginner’s workout to get started.
First, make sure that the area you choose to exercise in is clear of furniture, pets or anything that may prevent you from doing each exercise fully and safely. Also, turn your phone or desktop alerts off so you’re not distracted. Now, grab a towel, water, protein bar or whatever else you need for your workout.
Complete each exercise 10–25 times depending on the difficulty level of the band. Aim to complete three rounds of all eight exercises.
Loop the band so that it’s underneath the arch of both feet and hold the handles at your shoulders. Push your right leg out to the right with the foot flexed and off the floor. Set it back down and then push your left foot out to the left. Alternate between sides.
2. Overhead Press
Stand with the band underneath both feet and hold the handles at your shoulders. Push both arms up toward the ceiling and then lower them. To make this exercise easier, take one foot off the band, or alternate one arm up and then the other.
3. Hip Bridge
Lie on the floor with your left knee bent and your foot flat on the floor. Bring your right leg straight up in the air. Loop the resistance band over the bottom of your right foot and hold the resistance band tight. Keeping your right leg straight, lift your hips up and down without loosening the band. Don’t forget to switch sides.
4. Mid-Back Row
Sit on the floor with both feet straight out in front of you. Place the band around the bottoms of both feet. Pull the handles in toward your rib cage and release.
5. Bicep Curl
Stand on the band with one or both feet and hold the handles at your waist with palms up. Curl your arms up toward your shoulders and slowly lower them.
6. Reverse Lunge
Stand with one foot on the band and hold the handles either at your shoulders or down by your hips. Take the opposite leg back into a lunge. Repeat on both sides.
7. Triceps Press-Back
Stand with both feet on the band, hold the handles at your sides and turn your palms to face behind you. Keeping your arms straight, push them back to engage your triceps.
Anchor the band around the leg of a chair or bed and sit on the floor while holding both handles at your right hip. Lean back and pull both handles across your body to the left. Repeat on the other side.
Resistance bands are a convenient and inexpensive option to work out anytime, anywhere. When trying to decide which bands to buy, look for a performance resistance band kit that has multiple resistance bands of different tensions to accommodate a wider range of exercise options and you’ll never want to miss a workout again.