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5 Benefits Of Resistance Bands
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5 Benefits Of Resistance Bands

Resistance bands have been around for a long time, however they have yet to break out into the “mainstream” fitness world. The chances of going to a gym and finding a resistance band station is slim. Where the use of resistance bands has really taken off is in the rehabilitation field. Athletes and people recovering from various injuries or surgeries, are using resistance bands to build back strength in weakened or repaired muscles and also to restore range of motion.

Resistance bands when used correctly can be a great supplement to a muscle building, free weights training program and they can also be used in more of an aerobic fashion to increase cardiovascular activity and burn a lot of calories which can in turn lead to weight loss.

The following are 5 benefits of incorporating resistance bands into your training:

Resistance bands are not limited by the force of gravity. When using free weights, the resistance in any given exercises, comes from the opposing force of gravity against the force of your muscles lifting the weight. Because this is a vertical force, it limits the types of exercises that can be performed as well as the range of motion of these exercises. With resistance bands, due to their elastic properties, they are not limited to the vertical plane in order to provide resistance. This means that with the use of resistance bands you are able to perform exercises that work the same muscles as free weights but from different angles and with an increased range of motion. This leads to a greater efficiency in muscle activation when performing an exercise and also helps to prevent injuries when you go back to using free weights or even in sports.

No cheating! It is common to see someone in the gym not using correct form when lifting free weights. One of the most common mistakes when it comes to technique in performing an exercise is the use of momentum in order to lift heavier weight. An example of using momentum to lift a weight is when someone rocks their entire body in order to perform a bicep curl. By rocking the body and then curling the weight, some of the load of the weight has essentially been taken off of the bicep muscle, which means that it will not be exerting maximum force and will not be reaping the full benefits of the exercise. Resistance bands remove the element of cheating because the resistance here comes from the stretching (or tension) of the elastic in the resistance band, and not the actual weight of the resistance band.

Increased muscle fatigue. Picture a person performing a bench press with a barbell. One they grab the bar their hands are secured in that position until they place the bar back in the rack. They lift the weight and their arms move vertically with no variation whatsoever in the horizontal (or lateral) motion of their arms. When performing the same exercise using resistance bands, although the weight may not be as heavy, the way in which the muscle is worked varies slightly. The resistance bands now allow for lateral and vertical movement simultaneously. With an increase in the number of reps, the muscle fatigue felt from this exercise performed with resistance bands can be just as significant as with heavier free weights.

Extremely portable. Resistance bands are probably the most portable and most versatile pieces of fitness equipment available to date. They can fit into a small bag and can be used absolutely anywhere, with little or no other equipment needed. If you are on vacation or somewhere else without access to a weight room, resistance bands make the perfect workout apparatus. Most resistance bands come as a set that offers various levels of resistance.

Very Inexpensive. When compared to free weights (which are often times priced by the pound) or a gym membership (monthly or yearly), resistance bands are dirt cheap. It is often times possible to find a good set of resistance bands online for under $100. Many manufacturers of resistance bands also offer some kind of warranty against breakage which is something that should be considered when looking into buying a set of resistance bands for personal use.

Whether you are trying to lose weight or increase your strength in the weight room, resistance bands offer a great alternative as well as supplement to free weights. They allow for a greater range of motion and allow you to work your muscles from angles that are just not possible with free weights. They are extremely inexpensive and make a great addition to any workout routine.


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