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Sharp Health News

6 resistance band exercises to strengthen your entire body

April 14, 2020

6 resistance band exercises to strengthen your entire body

Olga Hays, an American Council on Exercise-certified wellness promotion specialist at Sharp HealthCare, demonstrates a bicep curl.

When access to the gym isn't possible or you simply crave some variety for your workouts, mini resistance bands (or loop bands) are a good go-to. They are easy to use, affordable and super versatile.

"With a few simple exercises, you can create a great total body workout and tone every muscle group in just 20 minutes a day, three times a week," says Olga Hays, an American Council on Exercise-certified wellness promotion specialist at Sharp HealthCare.

"When investing in mini bands, opt in for a pack of five or six bands that includes a variety of different resistance levels. This will ensure you have a few options to modify the resistance for the best outcomes."

Hays shares six resistance band exercises to tone your entire body. She suggests moving from one exercise to the next with little to no rest and repeating the circuit two to three times for a full workout.

Squat-to-Side Kick
Works: glutes, hips
Squat side kick resistance band exercise
  1. Begin by looping your band around your legs just above your ankles.
  2. Stand with your feet hip-width apart (keeping tension in the band), engage your glutes and push your hips into a squat.
  3. Push back to standing.
  4. Immediately lift your right leg out to your side, flexing your foot and keeping your toes pointing forward.
  5. Bring the leg back to the starting position. This is one rep.
  6. Repeat for 10 reps, never letting the tension leave your band.
  7. Switch sides and repeat.
Lat Pull Down
Works: back, shoulders and core
Lat pull down resistance band exercise
  1. Loop a band around the middle of your hands and bring both hands above your head.
  2. Keep the left arm in place, squeeze your back and pull your right arm down and to the side, toward the ribcage.
  3. Slowly return to start and repeat for 10 reps.
  4. Switch sides and repeat.
Overhead Tricep Extensions
Works: triceps, shoulders
Tricep extension resistance band exercise
  1. Hold a mini band in both hands. Place one hand next to your shoulder. One hand should be high and the other should be lower.
  2. Holding one hand next to the shoulder, extend the other arm down until the elbow is locked out.
  3. Pause at the bottom of the movement and then return, under control, to the start position.
  4. Complete 10 reps.
  5. Switch sides and repeat.
Bicep Curls
Works: biceps, forearms
Bicep curl resistance band exercise
  1. Kneel on a yoga mat with your right leg planted at a 90-degree angle.
  2. Slip the resistance band over your right foot and press it firmly into the ground.
  3. Grab the resistance band with your right palm facing up. Pull the right hand with the band up toward the shoulder into a bicep curl, and release down.
  4. Repeat 10 times
  5. Switch sides and repeat.
Fire Hydrant
Works: outer glutes, hips
Fire hydrant resistance band exercise
  1. Place the mini band just above your knees.
  2. Get on all fours (which is your starting position) with your wrists directly under your shoulders.
  3. Lift one knee to the side as high as you can. Try to reach a 90-degree angle for best results.
  4. Hold for a second, then slowly lower your knee back to the starting pose.
  5. Repeat 10 times.
  6. Switch sides and repeat.
Plank Side Tap
Works: core, shoulders and hamstrings
Plank side tap resistance band exercise
  1. Place band around your ankles; form a straight-arm plank.
  2. Move left foot out 6 inches.
  3. Return to start; repeat with right foot.
  4. Repeat 10 times.

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