Stretch Out Of Your Comfort Zone

By: Donna Vogel, Group Exercise Director & Instructor, Personal Trainer, HACZone Trainer

Training with exercise bands offers numerous fitness benefits. Strength training with resistance bands has been proven to prevent injuries, improve balance, offer nearly endless workout possibilities, and allow you to strengthen and stretch virtually every major muscle in your body.

Your muscles quickly adapt to movement you do often, which is why adding variety is the key to a successful workout.  Here are a few tips to help you incorporate bands safely and effectively into your workout regimen.

#1 Variety Is Good: some muscles in the body are stronger than others so having a collection of resistance bands with handles, varying size loops, and tension levels will allow you to properly exercise more muscle groups.

#2 Focus On Your Posture: it is crucial that you maintain proper posture while performing any resistance band exercise. Strong posture throughout resistance workouts will ensure a tone and sturdy core, particularly during standing workouts during which you should keep your knees slightly bent and legs no further apart than hip-width.

#3 Start Slow: Slow, controlled movements allow you to slowly guide the band rather than allowing it to snap back into place. Once you get comfortable with resistance exercise, you can gradually increase the tempo and direction of an exercise.

#4 Safety First: To avoid injuries or damage to bands make sure the band is securely positioned under an anchor, whether it is your feet or a piece of equipment. When performing the exercise, the band should be secured in a way so the length is appropriate to give resistance even at the bottom of the exercise.

Sample Exercises

Lunge with Bicep curl

Place the center of band under the instep of your left foot about two feet in front of you. With an underhand grip on the band handles, perform a bicep curl while bending your knees to lower into a lunge position.

Switch legs and repeat for 3 sets of 15 reps

Squat with Overhead Press

Stand in the middle of the band with feet parallel and shoulder width apart. Hold handles at shoulder height, with palms facing away from you and elbows bent. Squat deeply while pressing your arms directly over your head. Keep your weight on your heels and resist the band as you return to standing position.

3 sets of 15 reps

Seated Row

Sit on floor with legs slightly bent out in front. Loop band around soles of your feet, cross handles in front of you and hold one in each hand. Pull back on band so you bend your elbows and your hands meet your chest. Return to starting position.

3 sets of 15 reps

See It In Action

Try out our Bands, Balance, and Barre class on

Wednesday mornings at 10am to learn more exercises using resistance bands!

All photos retrieved from www.skinnymom.com.