The benefits of strength training is now widely known to everybody and the use of resistance bands in place of weights is an excellent alternative. P.E. instructors use and recommend them as a part of your exercise routines.
Resistance bands are made from an expandable or stretchable material in a shape of a tube with safety handles on each side, which makes them very a good choice for recuperating from injuries. With its safety features, resistance bands are great for home use and even for outdoor workouts because of its portability.
Resistance bands can be a great alternative to any equipment in a workout program and are also very helpful not just in making your muscles stronger but will also help out the condition of your cardiovascular system.
Strength training with the use of resistance bands covers the strengthening of not just the large and major muscle groups but will also strengthen the small isolated muscle groups of your body that are hard to workout with the use of weights. Many athletes now training with resistance bands to target the specific muscles they want to strengthen. In particular they work on the ones most used in their profession.
Unlike training with weights, the sets of guidelines for resistance band training has not been established yet, there are no standards set on how resistant the bands should be on a particular program in strengthening the muscles, but variations of some resistant bands like their color and length are meant to distinguish the intensity of the training and thus will allow you to perform a variety of exercise.
Following simple instructions like holding the bands on the handles will make the training more productive in that the bands will function more effectively and with more resistance. Manufacturers of resistance bands usually follow a color coding on their bands with respect to how resistant they are.
- Silver - Heaviest and the most resistant
- Black â Heavy but not quite as heavy and resistant as silver
- Blue â Extra heavy and resistant
- Green â moderately resistant
- Red â Medium resistance
- Yellow â The least resistant
Resistance bands actually can work out any muscle group that weights can, on top of added benefits of being able to strengthen the small muscle groups of the body like the shoulder, chest, legs, back, arms, and the abdominal muscle groups.
Pull-downs, squats, bicep curl, butterfly, triceps extension, hammer curl, lunges, bent-over rows, and lateral rows and other types of exercises can be performed with the use of resistance bands. There is actually a guideline on how to perform these basic exercises using resistance bands and a repetition between ten to fifteen times in two to three sets should suffice the training.
Squats: in performing a squat, step on the band with both feet apart in shoulder width. Complete a full squat while holding the handle with both hands at shoulder level and keeping the band at shoulder height.
Triceps Extension: Place one hand behind the back while holding a band with that same hand and try to reach over the head to your back and hold on to the other end of the band, and that would be your working arm. Raise your hand up full and lower it back down slowly. Resistance can be increased if you will hold the band lower.
Bent Over Rows: Place the band under one foot and step backward with the other foot. Bend to a 45 degree angle keeping your back flat, holding the band handles in your hands with arms down. Pull the band handles toward your waist keeping elbows close together. Squeeze shoulder blades during the exercise.
Lunges: take left back a couple of feet after standing with hip width apart. Hold the other end of the band and step on the other end of the band using the front foot. Lower your body until the thigh is parallel to the floor by bending your hip and knee.
Biceps Curl: Try to stand on the band with your feet in shoulder width apart. With you arms at the sides, grab the ends with underhand grip. In doing this activity you must keep your elbows at the side always. Curl your hands to reach hip level while keeping the elbows close to the body. Hammer curls can also be done by changing the position of the hand.
Lateral Rows: Step onto resistance band with feet hip width apart and knees slightly bent. Take ends with palms facing each other, arms hanging down at sides with elbows slightly bent. Raise arms out, shoulder height, keeping elbows slightly bent.
Exercise with the use of resistance bands have become a great alternative to using weights in strength training especially if training should be done at home or during a travel. Workout DVDs are now widely available in stores with various intensity of training using resistance band.
You don't need to buy bands with each color for the intensity can be changed by the way you hold the band. Before doing any exercise with resistance bands, check with your doctor first.