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Why You Should Add Resistance To Your Exercise Routine

Who Should Use Resistance Bands:

Anyone and everyone! Adding these to your exercise routine will surely help you reach your fitness goals. It is great to have different dimensions when training to enhance core strength, stability, balance, muscle endurance and mobility!

If you are looking to gain muscle and strength: adding bands to your dumbbells will ultimately provide you with a new challenge and stimulate your muscles. **add them to your barbell exercises to increase intensity and neuromuscular performance.

Older adults: adding bands will help you maintain strength and muscle without overdoing it. It is also a relatively safe method of exercise while continuing to increase bone strength (help prevent or combat osteoporosis).

Athletes: adding bands helps prepare athletes for movements in every plane of the body as well as improves on overall strength and power.

Prenatal / Postnatal Women: adding bands to exercise is a great way to modify many exercises for pre/postnatal women. If you are also newer to exercise – this isn’t the time to jump into an intense program, so bands will allow you to move through exercises safer as well as teach you to engage your core muscles (important!).

Why add resistance bands to exercise

1. They add more variety to exercises

· instead of just doing a normal bicep curl – adding the band will make the exercise much harder…you can also add the resistance to some jump lunges (secure the band to a stable structure and add more endurance to the exercise)

· if you deadlift or back squat, you can add the bands to the barbell allowing you to create more power from the movement

2. They are easily used no matter what your fitness level is

· most resistance band companies sell sets that come in different levels – light, medium or heavy. You can make the exercise harder or easier by using a variety of resistance levels as well as increasing or decreasing the slack on the bands

3. They engage more core strength/ stability/ challenge balance

· the constant tension from the bands makes you stabilize your body and engage more muscles to perform the exercise – ACTIVATE THAT CORE TO ENHANCE YOUR BALANCE

· ex: palof press with a band vs a machine cable will allow you to engage your core and

4. If you have light dumbbells or KBs add bands to create a harder dimension to the exercise

· if your weights are too light secure the band to the weight and continue to perform the exercise with the increase force created from the band

5. They are lightweight, portable and inexpensive

· great during the pandemic, traveling with limited space, affordable way of training if weights are out of the budget for now

6. Great way to warm up before your more dynamic workout

· great example is band walks to open up hip flexors before running or squats, they can also aid in a deeper stretch for certain exercises like

7. Great way to add functional movement

· they allow you to rotate and move in all planes of the body, unlike weight machines that usually only go in two directions

8. If you have an injury or joint pain, or recovering from surgery, pre/postnatal you have options

· resistance bands can allow you to continue to exercise and perform exercises that you might not be able to with heavier weights

9. Help with mobility and flexibility

· wrap the band around a sturdy object and use the band to improve ankle and hip mobility (great if you lack in mobility for squats!)

· you can use the bands to assist with stretching to extend your reach and provide pressure

10. The pull of the bands reduces your ability to cheat – allows you to FOCUS and CONTROL each movement better and more efficiently

· easier to cheat with free weights because of momentum

Here are a few links of how I use resistance bands in my exercise routines:

  1. Banded bird dog -

  2. Banded lower body circuit -

  3. Banded full body (add dumbbell for added intensity!) -

  4. Pull workout (you can see I used a variety of weights and bands in this exercise!) -

Meg DeSalvo Fit

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