Resistant bands exercise programs have really blown up over the years for weight loss, strength building and muscle activation. But do they actually work, or is it another gimmick?
Whenever there is a question of the validity of a new workout or exercise equipment, my first search is always with professional athletes and their trainers.
The practical use of exercise bands in training can be found in all professional sports such as football, soccer, MMA-UFC, baseball, golf, tennis, basketball and hockey, just to name a few.
So superstar athletes such Lebron James, Romelu Lukaku and Tiger Woods are using the same inexpensive bands purchased at any Walmart, Amazon, or fitness store, so why shouldn’t we too?
1. Make Exercises Easier
Exercise bands are not just for athletes who are already in shape but also a great way to start your weight loss journey or new fitness. Exercise bands are a great way to substitute more challenging bodyweight exercises such as push-ups or squats by allowing you to work the same muscles groups with alternative band exercises.
For example, if you are working towards completing a push-up, then subbing it with a band fly and a band press will help to activate and strengthen the same muscles. In this case, the chest, shoulder and triceps!
2. Resistance to Lose Weight & Build Muscle
You can most certainly build strength and lose weight with bodyweight exercises such as squats and lunges; the next step and progression should be creating resistance.
We often think of using weights or machines for weight loss and build muscle, but due to the high demand and cost of exercise equipment, resistance bands have skyrocketed in popularity thanks to the pandemic.
All band types, whether with handles, power bands (big elastic bands), “booty” shorter bands that fit around the ankles or thighs, all provide various resistance from easy to very hard.
3. Best Bang For Your Buck
Resistance bands have a much lower cost than purchasing weights or machines (cardio or weighted), and it takes up very little space in your home.
You can always travel with your bands so that you never miss an opportunity to work out and stay in a routine.
But most importantly, research has shown that you can make similar strength gains using elastic resistant bands compared to their dumbbell or weight machine counterparts.
4. Works the Forgotten Muscles
Stabilizer muscles are an essential muscle group in our body that helps to support our larger muscles and joints during movement. It also helps prevent injuries from slipping on ice, tripping, poor posture and overuse.
Often, our workouts focus on exercising the large muscles such as our chest, legs, and back and our stabilizer muscles can sometimes take a back seat.
Important stabilizer muscles include the rotator cuff (shoulder), erector spinae (mid back), glute muscles (pelvis and hips). Strengthening these stabilizer muscles can improve movement and stability, and is why resistance bands are often used in rehabilitation.
7 Must Do Band Exercises
Below you will find 7 resistant band exercises that will workout all the main muscle groups and some of the smaller ones too.
If you don’t have access to an exercise band yet, we still have you covered with a 30 Min Bodyweight Workout that you can download below. It will have video clips like the ones below and provide you key tips on how to do the exercises properly.