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The Power of Resistance Bands

Are you skeptical about using resistance bands? 🤔 I get it! You see the number of pounds on the dumbbell or kettlebell you are lifting so you can really see your progress as you pick up heavier weights. But what about resistance bands? Can they really help you build muscle or challenge your muscles? Let's explore them shall we..

Resistance bands are a great alternative strength training tool because they are easy to use and super cheap. 🥳 Like cable machines at the gym, they allow you to isolate muscles. Similar to free weights, you can vary the resistance you're pushing and pulling. But unlike weights and cables, bands are a cheap, portable item you can throw into a bag and literally get your workout done anytime, anywhere.🙌

The Benefits

They may look no match for barbells, but resistance bands have a cool muscle-building trick up their sleeve. When performing an exercise, bands place constant tension on your muscles through the full range of motion - from the bottom on every move. This triggers more muscle activation and creates the micro-tears you need to repair and build muscle.

The good stuff doesn't end there. You might think of bands as an additional tool to make exercises like squats harder, but they can also be used to make tough exercises like pull-ups easier. Anchoring a band around a pull-up bar and under your feet will give you an assist - taking some of the load out of the exercise and helping you work up your strength to take on the full move, unassisted.

How to choose the right band

You want to pick a band that challenges you in the rep range you're working in, but still allows you to perform the exercise with control and good form.

Difference in bands

Small loop bands "booty bands" - designed to wear around your legs to work your hips, glutes and hamstrings. All booty bands are manufactured to exert a different level of tension strengths depending on the user’s needs. Your choice of booty bands in terms of tension strength would depend largely on desired intensity and exercise selection

Long loop bands - best for full-body exercises and pull-up assistance. The thicker, the more resistance. While the thickness of the band does determine how heavy it feels when you stretch it, you can also make the move feel easier or harder by playing with the length of the band. For instance, if you’re doing a biceps curl by stepping on the band to anchor it, stepping higher on the band (leaving less length to curl) will make it harder.

Tube bands with handles - work just as well as the loop bands but the handles can provide different grips making certain moves more comfortable. When it comes to workouts, the handles on resistance tubes give them the advantage of being able to be anchored just about anywhere, making it easier to get a gym-like workout on the go.

For example, you can anchor them beneath your feet rather than on a lamppost or door handle, making them extremely practical and user-friendly. The grip of the handles is usually easier on your palms too, which is always a plus when wanting to train more often.

Wide, flat, thin bands "therapy bands" - great for recovery, rehab and stretching.

These perfectly portable stretch marvels enable you to do low-impact strength training through lots of different exercises, and have been used for decades by physios and their athletes.

Quick tips💡

Slow down the lowering movement to maximize muscle tear and boost growth. For example, when doing bicep curls the lifting phase should take 1 second and the lowering phase should take 3 seconds. 💪

If you are finding an exercise too easy, stretching the band further will create a greater resistance without needing to find a thicker band. For example, pull-a-parts move your hands closer together. 👍

When anchoring your band to a stationary object, make sure that the object is solid, stable and won't move when you pull on the band. Don't want to hurt yourself with flying furniture! 😂

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