Building muscle takes time, effort, and patience. Resistance bands present a simple technology that can also be extremely effective for building your muscles. They’re easily portable, affordable, and ultra easy to store in your home. How can they help? Here’s a brief look at how to build muscle using a resistance band and how they can help you stay in great shape.
Resistance bands are made of latex or rubber and come in various degrees of strength and flexibility. Typically, you anchor part of the band with your body- say, under your feet- and pull on the other end with another part of your body, like your arms. The resistance helps you build strength. You can also anchor a band on a piece of furniture like a table leg, or a banister and go from there.
Resistance bands come in various resistance levels and are designed to workout different areas of your body. Some are made to workout your legs, others your upper body, and others can be used for full body workouts. The beauty of resistance bands is that they’re so versatile.
For resistance training, you need to ensure you’re using higher tension bands to produce greater results. This means engaging in progressive overload. It’s important to find the right tension so that your workout results in muscle hypertrophy, something that happens when your muscles are damaged and broken down from being challenged. With rest and nutrition after your workout, your muscles then rebuild themselves, increasing your strength.
In order to make sure you’re challenging your muscles, increase the size or tension of your resistance bands, or increase the number of reps to promote muscle exhaustion. Of course, you don’t want to push so far that you really injure yourself, but you do need to make sure your muscle is contracting hard at the end of each set, and that you feel the burn.
It’s also important to rest following training. You need to allow your body to recover adequately. So, no pain, no gain rings true but so does, no rest, no best.
Ideally, you want to vary your resistance workouts over time. Sometimes they should be heavy, followed by a week of lighter resistance so that you’re alternating between low, moderate, and high-intensity workouts as part of periodization. Vary your workouts during the week and build progressively over time.
It’s important to remember that resistance bands, unlike dumbbells, are causing constant tension in your muscles, so treat your body accordingly.
The technique required for a resistance band workout varies depending on the activity, but generally speaking you want to continually control the band and prevent it from snapping back into place. Try to ensure you move in a simple, straight pathway. If the band is pulling your arm or leg to the side and you’re not in control, use a different level of resistance. You want to be able to constantly control your movement against the resistance of the band.
Resistance bands can be great for repairing your muscles after an injury and can also be a staple part of your regular workout routine. As with free weights and dumbbells, muscle building takes time but it’s worth the effort!