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We all know that feeling. The feeling you get when you find yourself in a workout rut. You see yourself doing the same types of exercises, working the same muscles, you’ve hit a plateau, and you just feel like you need something new.
The issue with this rut feeling is that typically one of two things have to happen. The first solution is investing in more equipment so that your at-home workouts can get a refresh. The downside to this solution is that it can be expensive, and depending on the amount of space readily available, you might be limited to what type of equipment you can purchase.
The second solution is getting a membership to a gym and engaging in different workouts through using their machines, or group fitness classes. The problem here is that gyms are typically crowded and you spend more time waiting on equipment than you actually do use the equipment. Classes are a great option, however, those are usually at set times that do not allow much flexibility.
So the question remains, how do you take your at-home workouts to the next level without a very expensive addition to your gym or starting a membership? The answer is simple, introduce a small versatile addition like training bands.
What is a Training Band?
A training band is a lightweight elastic band that is used to contract muscles. The motion of contracting muscles when using a training band allows the user to build strength when pulling against the band. Originally, training bands were used for physical therapy purposes. The bands were used for those with damaged muscles to steadily rebuild lost strength.
Today, training bands have been found to be a great tool in overall strength training including workouts. Training bands are usually color-coded by varying resistance levels for easy identification when working out.
Training bands are ideal for exercises such as bench presses, squats, pull-ups, tricep dips, and just about any exercise where resistance can be applied.
How Training Bands Intensify Weighted Workouts
They Add Load
One of the most important parts of fitness is progressive overload. In order to get stronger, you must push muscles past their threshold for strength rather than keeping your weight or weight used in your routine stagnant.
You never want to do the same reps at the same tempo while using the same weight because the body will simply plateau. Progressive overload allows the muscles to be challenged in small increments so that they can grow bigger and stronger.
Grabbing a heavier weight can sometimes be costly if you are supplying your own free weights, and depending on the exercise, a full dumbbell difference may be too much. A nice step in between is adding a band. This can be done by tying the band to a point on a cage or even using your foot to step on the band while holding the weight and the band simultaneously during a workout.
Training Bands Enhance Tension
With free weights, it can be easy to speed up the tempo, go too far up or down, and release the tension on the muscle at large. When you add a training band to your dumbbell it gives resistance all the way up and all the way down the exercises, requiring concentration on the muscle.
Adding resistance will lead to a more intentional exercise resulting in a more productive workout. The perfect example of this is a hammer curl. It takes quite a bit of effort to drive the weight up, and without being intentional, half of the exercise could be missed upon bringing the weight down. When used in conjunction with a training band, you must focus the bicep when coming down to keep the tension, thus getting a better workout.
Focus on Form
When there is continuous tension in an exercise, more time is needed to focus on the movement. This focus on the exercise allows you to also focus on form. The slower and controlled movements when using a training band really give you some time to look into the mirror while you perform your exercise.
Take a look and see if your footing is in the correct location, if your posture is correct, if the starting point and end m]point of the movement are where they should be. Studies have also shown that not letting your mind wander and actually taking the time to look at the muscle and think about the muscle while performing the exercise also yields better results.
Using Training Bands on Their Own
Aside from being an economical addition to add to the equipment you already have, training bands are also capable of being used for full-body workouts all on their own. Target various muscle groups by doing any of these select workouts:
Run the band across your back and place opposite ends of the band under each palm. Push into your hands to drive your body up feeling the tension of the band.
Band Chest Press:
Lay on your back with the band underneath your shoulders. Take the opposite ends of your band in each hand and push your arms up, pulling the band up with them.
Band Russian Twist:
Sit on the floor with your legs straight in front of you. Loop the training band around your feet. Pull the opposite end in two different directions forming a triangle with a point in each hand and the third point around your feet. Twist side to side.
Band Horizontal Wood Chop:
Tie your training band to a post or cage, stand with your side facing the tie, and pull the band across your whole body.
Band Plank with Row:
Tie your training band to a post or cage, get into plank position. With one hand, pull the opposite end of the band and pull it towards your rib.
Stand with both feet on top of the resistance band. Hold both ends of the training band in either hand and squat.
Band Hammer Curl:
Stand with both feet on top of the resistance band. Hold both ends of the training band in either hand and pull the band up.
These are simply one handful of exercises that can be done with training bands. There are so many more and when coupled together, they can form a very powerful full-body workout.
ARCHON Training Bands
At Archon, we design and manufacture all of our equipment. What that means is that we are looking for great quality design and great quality materials for all of the equipment we create. Our Archon training bands will not melt in the sun, stain your hands, and be a safe addition for you in your workout routine.
Whether you are looking to add to the equipment you have or use the training bands to create a full-body workout, we have you covered. Take a look at our website to purchase your ARCHON equipment today.