Resistance Bands: Why You Should Use Them

Training & Fitness

Resistance Bands are a great way of levelling up your strength training. They're most commonly used in workout routines for strength training or as physical therapy. In short resistance bands help you to activate muscles that aren't always in use in regular full body workouts.

Resistance Bands are a popular choice among people interested in fitness as they're affordable, easy to use and lightweight (perfect for chucking in your gym bag). If you have a goal of getting toned but don't necessarily want to go to a gym - resistance bands make it easier to achieve a full body workout at home. 

As the name would suggest, these bands add resistance or tension to your workout. Using a band in your workout will engage your 'stabiliser' muscles, these are muscles that support our joints and bigger muscle groups, therefore helping to reduce the risk of injury. Thus explaining why resistance bands are suitable for physical therapy as they offer a 'low-impact' option. 


 The Benefits of Resistance Bands

  1. They help tone and strengthen - As the band creates tension, it makes your muscles contract, meaning the more you stretch the band the more intense the tension becomes. 
  2. They don't just add resistance - The bands also can assist in doing particular exercises. For example, pull-ups, you can hook the band round the bar and under your knee or foot to progress to an unassisted version. The band acts as a support of your body weight.
  3. A great addition to your stretching routine -  Bands have great potential to provide pain relief, especially to your lower back and upper body. 
  4. They're Lightweight - Unlike a lot of workout additions or gym equipment, resistance bands are extremely lightweight, meaning they can be chucked into a gym bag for your next session or even taken with you when travelling!
  5. Apt for injury recovery - Bands differ from weights as they don't apply pressure like weights do, meaning during rehabilitation they keep the body and all its joints safe.


How Do I choose the Right Resistance Band?

Even though resistance bands all aim to do the same thing, there are several types. A very elastic band will provide a gentle workout so is a good place to start. Usually the thicker the band, the more resistance but there are types best suited to certain types of exercise. 

Classic Resistance Band -  Made from Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) - a Latex-free stretchy plastic. Classic bands come in many different resistance strengths and can be used for everyday fitness and physical therapy. You can integrate these bands into your yoga or pilates routine and sports training. They're also great if you're recovering from certain injuries, like knee, shoulder and more!

Loop Bands - Loop bands are shorter bands and are best suited to training the lower body, like thighs and glutes. Adding a loop band to a Glute Bridge or a Squat is a great way to enhance your workout.

Tube Bands - These bands are often 4ft long and covered in stretchy fabric, they feature two grip handles at both ends. They're great at using multiple muscle groups at the same time. They have the most varied use, as they're suited to training both the upper and lower body.

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