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HEALTHY LIVING: 5 at home resistance band exercises to get you started

HEALTHY LIVING: 5 at home resistance band exercises to get you started

Fitness centers offer a wide selection of machines and amenities, but many people prefer to exercise in the comfort of their homes. Working out at home is convenient, especially with a few staple pieces of equipment. 

Resistance bands offer a unique approach to at-home workouts because they are inexpensive, light weight, and easy to use. They can wrap around sturdy surfaces, enabling the user to enhance their range of motion. Bands can also be used as a stand-alone equipment. Tubular bands function as a low-intensity form of resistance, making them ideal for beginners. Here are five exercises to get you started. 

1. Chest pull apart

Start in a relaxed stance with the feet shoulder width apart. Place the band across your chest with your hands straight out in front. The hands should be slightly outside of shoulder width with the palms facing downward. Slowly pull apart the band across the chest. 

This exercise works the pectoral muscles in addition to the triceps and biceps. The back muscles are also engaged as the shoulders pinch towards one another.

2. Lateral raises

The angle that you step on the band will determine the resistance. For a more difficult resistance, stagger the feel placing the leading foot farther from your body. Relax the arms at the sides of your body and slowly pull the band by the loops up to shoulder height.  

Lifting the arms at a 45-degree angle will enable you to target the rear deltoid muscles that form the caps of the shoulders.

3. Bicep curls 

Keep the toes pointing forward and step onto the middle of the band. Grip the hand loops and curl into the shoulders. The length of time that you hold this position is known as muscle time under tension. 

To increase the bicep muscle’s time under tension, repetitions of this exercise can be done tempo style by counting 1,2,3 as your curl and then again at the release.

4. Glute kickbacks

The hands should be staked underneath the shoulders and the knees beneath the hips. Pull the top of the band between the hands. Loop one foot onto the end of the band and extend the hamstring upward.

Throughout this exercise, maintain the table top position and keep the core still as the leg kicks back. 

5. Bicycle crunches 

Begin by lying flat on your back in a supine position. Place your feet in the band loops and bring the center of the band to your chest or loop it overhead. Alternate legs as you lift the knees to your chest while holding the middle of the band steady to maintain resistance. 

This exercise can be modified to a singular motion by simultaneously lifting the knees to the chest. Once the set is complete, the legs release back to the ground.

Proper form is essential to progressing in any exercise routine and should be a priority. To avoid back strain, be aware of your stance throughout the workout. To prevent the knees from locking out, keep a slight bend in them.

Kristen Dearborn is a Wallingford native, NASM certified personal trainer and author of the blog dearfitkris–