Why you need to start using resistance bands
There is no doubt that you have seen resistance bands all over the internet. The hashtag #resistancebands has 500,000 posts from around the world, with men and women alike using them during heavy lifts, for at home workouts, warm ups, cool downs and everything in between. It’s safe to say they’ve taken the health and fitness world by storm - but what are the benefits of resistance band training? Here’s everything you need to know.
What are resistance bands?
Resistance bands are the bands used in elastic-resistance training (ERT), a type of training that has been integrated in powerlifting for decades, but has only recently made its way into the mainstream. They are typically made from rubber or material and work to provide resistance to increase the intensity of an exercise, working in a similar way to weights, but with a few key differences.
When a resistance band is used in an exercise, it causes a variation in the load being lifted throughout the range of motion. To see this in an example - when you squat with a barbell on your back, the resistance is the barbell working against gravity. In the concentric part of a squat - the lowering down - you are working withgravity, but only in the eccentric part of a squat - the movement upwards - are you working actively against resistance in the form of moving the barbell through gravity.
Now if you compare this to squatting with a resistance band - a band provides resistance throughout the range of motion, which means in both the concentric and eccentric part you are working against resistance, which has a plethora of benefits for your performance by testing your force generation capacity throughout different phases of ranges of motion.
What are the benefits?
So now you know howthey work, the next question is why are they so beneficial? Resistance bands are extremely effective, supported by a multitude of studies.
A study published in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapyin 2017 examined the effects of using resistance bands on muscle activation during a squat. The participants were asked to perform a three rep maximum squat and a bodyweight squat for maximum reps, while the electromyography and kinematics of four muscles were measured. The researchers found that resistance bands significantly increased muscle activity compared to unbanded squats, provided knee stability and increased activation of stabilizing muscles.
As well as increasing muscle activation, studies also show that using resistance bands in a warm up increases explosive exercise performance. This is because resistance bands help to generate force efficiently through different ranges of motion. In fact, according to 2008 research, if you combine free weights with resistance bands - you’re going to experience superior increases in strength, power and muscle mass, compared to just using free weights.
So to summarize: you need to start using resistance bands. They’re so effective in fact that 95 percent of all elite athletes routinely use resistance bands as part of their training, and why they’re taking the fitness world by storm. If you’re ready to get started, click this link to purchase our resistance bands set so you can crush your workouts.
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