FIT TIP: Jump On The Bandwagon
June 10, 2014 / Category: Fitness Advisor
Need to refresh your strength routine? How about picking up a resistance band? Rubberized resistance will help you perform functional total-body exercises, refresh a stale routine and give you the toned results you’re working for.
They also function as a great post-workout stretching aid. Plus, what other piece of exercise equipment can fit in your suitcase with almost no extra weight? Hello, hotel workout!
Benefits of Bands:
- Resistance bands offer the same benefits of other resistance exercises without being cumbersome and heavy.
- If you use proper form and a challenging level of tension, your muscle fibers won't know the difference between weights or bands. Even better, bands can offer more muscle recruitment because you can use multiple muscle groups at once. Try a squat with a bicep curl. Try a lunge with an overhead press. They increase coordination and build buff muscles!
- Resistance bands are the economical choice – inexpensive, lightweight and portable.
- The band's multidirectional movement can boost your strength for everyday activities.
Which strength of band is for you?
Resistance bands come in a range of levels, shapes and colors. To determine the right strength of band for you, use this rule of thumb: You should reach moderate to maximum muscle fatigue between 20-30 repetitions of your exercise. If your band is too easy, you’ll know. If it’s too hard, you won’t be able to complete the full range of motion.
Which type of band you choose depends on what you are using it for:
- Flat bands are great for physical therapy, mind-body exercise and active agers.
- Traditional exercise tubes are the most-used bands and are great for basic strength training and multiple muscle group exercises.
- Superbands are great for pull-up assistance, partner exercises and athletic training.
- You may have also seen braided tubing, looped bands, ankle cuffs ... the variety is endless.
The bottom line – bands can be a fun, useful and portable tool to add to your weekly routine. C’mon, jump on the (resistance) bandwagon!