Don’t have the money to spend on dumbbells, or maybe you are looking for something different in your workout? Try using resistance bands instead and get the awesome results you are looking for.
I tend to go back and forth quite a bit when it comes to resistance bands. I find that in some cases I would prefer to use dumbbells, while in other exercises, resistance bands are the way to go. It really depends how I feel that day. The best resistance band workouts I have done involve my triceps. There is something about working out with a resistance band for triceps that is much more satisfying than a dumbbell. Let’s take a look the best resistance band workouts, and why you should add them to your collection of fitness equipment.
- Why Use Resistance Bands?
- Are There Different Types of Resistance Bands?
- Who Should Use Resistance Bands?
- Who Should Not Use Resistance Bands?
- When Do I Use Resistance Bands In My Workouts?
- What To Watch Out For
Why Use Resistance Bands?
Resistance Bands provide important benefits a free-weight cannot provide. This is because resistance bands do not rely on gravity to provide the resistance required to complete the exercise. This allows you to do more exercises that can mimic your everyday activities as well as sport-related ones.
The big difference is you can have resistance in a horizontal plane and not just a vertical one. This allows for movements such as twisting the body from side to side, or a baseball swing. It can help to better train you for everyday tasks, and works muscles you may not normally target with dumbbells.
The best reason to get resistance bands is they provide a cheap, and space saving way to get in shape. When traveling they are much easier to pack than a rack of dumbbells, and are much lighter to carry. You can save hundreds of dollars by just using resistance bands for your training. Most commercials like to use dumbbells to portray the “strong man”, but if you use resistance bands correctly you will see the same, if not better results.
Also, resistance bands add a variety to your workout. This can help if you feel that your workouts are starting to drag and you want something different. Switch it up and use the resistance bands for a different experience.
Are There Different Types of Resistance Bands?
Yes! Resistance bands also come with different “weight” values. I currently own a 25 lbs. and 40 lbs. resistance bands. Depending on the exercise, I will choose the appropriate one for the workout. You will want to choose the resistance bands that you can work with best, and as you improve you can look into heavier resistance bands. Also, there are many different brands for resistance bands where some are color coded. Mine are not currently color coded, but I know by the size of the band what the resistance is.
Who Should Use Resistance Bands?
From above, price is one of the best reasons to get resistance bands. Many people feel that working out at home still involves a lot of equipment they do not have. Resistance bands helps to solve this barrier. I would just buy a set of bands and use them as needed. You could even get a door hang for cheap if you did not want a pull-up bar.
Another reason you may want resistance bands is for storage. If you live in a small apartment (which I do) the resistance bands can easily be stored in a closet or even in a small basket. Instead of having many dumbbells, or even the PowerBlocks or SelectTech, you can have resistance bands that take up even less space.
If you travel a lot and need to workout, resistance bands are perfect for you! I know I wouldn’t want to carry around heavy dumbbells in a suitcase, especially when boarding a plane. Take resistance bands with you to a hotel and keep your workout program going! There is no excuse for you not to get in your workout for the day.
If you are a beginner just starting your workouts, you may want resistance bands. I find that resistance bands help target muscles I normally don’t use when working out with dumbbells. I especially feel the difference in triceps and forearms when using resistance bands. Dumbbells are great the show muscles, but hitting other muscles can be tricky. The resistance bands make it a bit easier.
Lastly, if you are older I suggest using resistance bands. The bands can be easier on your joints for each movement, while providing the resistance you need. They are also light to pick-up so you can avoid issues like lower back and knee pain. Protecting your body is the most important part of your workouts because if you get injured, you may find you stop working out altogether.
Who Should Not Use Resistance Bands?
If you don’t want to purchase any type of workout equipment and focus solely on body weight, don’t get resistance bands. In this case you are not willing to put forth any money to equipment, which is fine, but you will need to push towards your goals with advanced body moves.
If you think that someone using resistance bands is a “wuss”, don’t get resistance bands. I will tell you every time that you are wrong for saying this, but you are already in a different mindset and you will not do the workout appropriately if you are mocking those doing resistance band exercises.
If you are looking to be a body builder and bench 300+ pounds, look for your equipment elsewhere. Resistance Bands will get you in shape and ripped, but gaining a ton of size will require immense weight. I advise if you want to achieve these kinds of results, stay at the gym. A home workout is catered for those looking to get an athletic looking body, not a pro body builder.
When Do I Use Resistance Bands In My Workouts?
I use resistance bands in my workouts when I want to change things up. I currently have PowerBlock dumbbells that I love, but resistance bands add a new way to do exercises. When I really want to feel the workout test my strength through the entire movement, I go for resistance bands as it keeps constant tension.
I do admit I use the dumbbells more often than resistance bands, but I have started using the resistance bands more now that I feel comfortable with them. Yes, many exercises can seem awkward, but it will get the job done just like a dumbbell will. Many people underestimate resistance bands and it is a shame because they are a great tool for your workouts.
What To Watch Out For
I have had two instances where I ended up throwing my resistance bands across the room, while in pain. The first instance is when I was doing a tricep extension while standing, and the foot holding the resistance band to the floor let up and the band snapped across my back. I was shirtless during this workout as I was sweating quite a bit, but the pain I received was incredible. I had a nice red line across my back, almost as though I had been whipped. Just be careful in your exercises to avoid this.
The second time I was doing a shoulder workout while standing, and my right hand side snapped. Luckily I was not hit by it, but it did crack across the floor. I had been using this band for about 3 years, so it may have been getting old. Just make sure you are using bands that are up to par with your workouts.
- Cheap compared to dumbbells
- Easy to pack and travel with
- Workout on horizontal plane
- Add variety
- Better for all fitness levels
- Have the potential to snap
- Some exercises are awkward
If you cannot afford dumbbells and are looking to add some variety into your workouts, pick up some resistance bands. Some of the best resistance band workouts can get you in incredible shape. I use them all the time. I do use my dumbbells more, but I have been dripping in sweat using resistance bands before. Just make sure you watch out for a snapping band as they age.
Also, if you travel a lot, or need to add some variety to you workouts, resistance bands are the way to go. Easy to store, and hit muscle groups you are not used to. Don’t underestimate resistance bands as they can get you the results you want. Just make sure you are using the resistance bands correctly. The best resistance band workouts can rival any dumbbell workout with the correct form and determination.