Posted on August 25, 2017 by Louisa Feary
In this blog we’re going to cover the benefits and uses of resistance bands. Hopefully by the end you will be ready and willing to give it a go as part of your workout routine.
What are resistance bands?
Resistance bands, or physio bands, are either flat or tubular and can come with or without handles. They tend to be either fabric or elastic feeling and are incredibly useful for working your muscles safely, warming up and recovering after an injury. They come in varying strengths of resistance depending on your strength or resistance needs.
Why are they useful?
As described above, resistance bands are great for working your muscles, warming up or recovering after an injury. The latter is a key attribute to using resistance bands. If you’re athletic or exercise regularly it won’t be surprising that at some point you will stumble across an injury or two. When that happens you will most likely want to get back to training as soon as possible. However you need to do it safely; take it easy and ease yourself into it. Resistance bands allow you to work specific muscles and gently build up strength without over doing it. As the injury in question gets better you can move back on to dumbbells or machines safely.
Apart from injuries, the bands can be used to warm up with dynamic stretches and travelling movements, and they are a great alternative to using resistance machines or when dumbbells and bars are not appropriate, for moves such as leg raises or shoulder flexibility exercises.
How to use resistance bands?
For a warm up resistance bands can be held with one end in each hand, with a bit of resistance between the hands keep your arms straight as your arms travel from in front of your, up and over your head and back again. Keep a steady rhythm and repeat about eight times, or until your shoulders feel warmer and looser.
As a resistance exercise, loop one band around a secure pole and place one foot into the loop. Keeping a tight core and straight working leg, kick back and squeeze your working glute. Repeat 10 times on both legs and repeat three times.
For injuries, we would always recommend asking our physiotherapist first or a trainer. However they are great for rotator cuffs, hip flexors and wrist/ankle injuries, so from head to toe!
Hopefully this has given you an idea of how resistance bands are a key piece of equipment in the gym and next time you’re training you will give it a go!