A common question that a lot of people who start their training is whether they need resistance bands. It is a question that most people who do strength training, especially women, seem to have. Whether you are a beginner, weight lifter, experienced trainer, or trying to recover from an injury, you SHOULD try resistance bands. Often referred to as the magic bands of the strength training industry, these bands do a lot of good for you. But what benefits do they provide, and why should we use them? Here’s a look at how resistance bands work, and what benefits they provide!
What are Resistance Bands?
Resistance bands are a type of fitness equipment or item used to help stretch your muscles. They are made using elastic and fibrous material, which help them stretch. Therefore, they help with strength training, as you need to apply force to extend them. They can be used for injury recovery training, aesthetics, athletics, and even physical therapy.
Major Types of Resistance Bands
- Handled: These bands come with built-in handles that help make them easier to hold. They are perfect for developing grip strength and also for building muscles. These handles help make it easier for you to ply and move the band, as it gives you a sturdy grip. It also helps make the band very versatile, allowing you to use it for a variety of strength-training exercises.
- Stackable: These help moderate and control the intensity of workouts. These bands can be placed on top of each other to create larger sections of bands. The more bands you stack, the more resistance they offer, helping you build stronger muscles.
- Therapy Flat Bands: These are mainly used for physical therapy and injury recovery. They are wide and flat in shape, helping them wrap around your hand. Also, you can adjust their length very quickly, and you can cut them into smaller pieces. Furthermore, these bands can be used while doing Pilates to help with adding resistance.
- Loops: While similar to flat bands, these are smaller and also form a closed loop. Mostly, they are used to help stretch and strengthen the hips and buttocks. They are a common item found in gyms to help people work on their legs and thighs.
- Leg-Arm Tubes: These are closed-loop bands which come in several shapes. For instance, you have bands for the ankle cuffs, you also have bands in the form of 8 to help the upper body. They tend to be muscle-specific and have minimal use, as they help tone specific muscles.
- Power-Mobility: These are heavy-duty loop bands that help powerlifters. They are also a great way to indulge in cross-training. They help with stretching your muscles, correct mobility, and improve your strength and resistance training.
Benefits of Resistance Bands
Resistance Band Benefit 1
Less Chance of Injury
One of the most significant advantages of using resistance bands is that they help reduce the chance of injury. As per studies done by various training institutes, these bands help provide the same muscular activity associated with weight training. However, they force less amount of pressure on your joints, highly reducing the likelihood of injuring yourself. Also, in the long run, these bands apply less force on your joints, leading to ache-free joints. Furthermore, since they don’t put undue pressure on joints, they are perfect for people who have joint pain.
Resistance Band Benefit 2
Another significant difference between weights and resistance bands is that the latter offers variable resistance. Also, the resistance depends on the exercise’s full range of motion, and hence it gradually picks up. However, when it comes to free weights, specific muscles do little work, as they are aided by gravity. But, resistance bands ensure that every set of tissue does some work, making it a better all-round option.
Resistance Band Benefit 3
The tension present in the bands makes them a great way to activate your core muscles. Whenever you need to maintain form while working with these bands, your core muscles have to exert themselves to provide stabilization. Therefore, it isn’t just your arms and legs, but your core, too, that gets a good workout. The pull that the resistance bands offer also limits your ability to use momentum to balance yourself.
Resistance Band Benefit 4
Resistance bands help much when it comes to athletic training. They provide an increased load, variable resistance, full-body workout, core engagement, and instability. Traditional training combined with the right amount of band exercise helps develop muscle strength much more effectively than conventional training alone. Using these bands while doing back squats and bench presses help double the gains, which is a significant improvement. Furthermore, studies show that bands that have weights in them help boost neuromuscular performance and strength.
Resistance Band Benefit 5
Greater Exercise Options
These bands are incredibly versatile, making them great for a plethora of exercises. If you use barbells or dumbbells, you don’t have many options when it comes to the type of activity you want to do. However, with resistance bands, you can do many different kinds of exercises, without any extra equipment. Since they do not use gravity in any way, you can do both vertical and horizontal plane exercises using them.
Resistance Band Benefit 6
While many people want to work out and take their health seriously, the cost of it sets them back. It isn’t very easy to buy all the equipment you would need to do a full-body workout. Also, not all gym memberships come cheap. SO, what is the best alternative? The resistance band, of course! These are extremely versatile and allow you to do a tonne of exercises. Also, they are incredibly affordable, making them an excellent investment in maintaining a healthier lifestyle. Buying a set of resistance bands, for a quarter of the price, will save you from having to buy a tonne of weights!
Other Benefits of Resistance Bands
- Great for rehabilitation and recovery training after an injury.
- Safe for use, even for the elderly and those with muscle and joint pains.
- Significantly improves stretching capacity and mobility.
- Serves as a fantastic post-workout and pre-workout tool to warm up and cool down.
- Since they are portable, it is perfect for exercising while on a trip.
After reading about all these benefits of resistance bands, I’m sure you are convinced you need to get these yourself. Whether you are trying to gain muscle, lose weight, build your core, or recover after an injury, these bands will help you. Still unsure of which band to buy? Check out our article on the best resistance band reviews to get an idea of which one to get for yourself!