It should be no secret that strength training is essential for women. It has nothing to do with bulking up, and everything to do with optimizing your health.
The laundry list of reasons women benefit so greatly from strength training includes stamina, flexibility, more functional movement, an optimized shift in hormones, and management or prevention of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Plus, it comes with an added benefit of helping you tone up and trim down. What’s not to love about hitting the weight room?
Well, therein lies one of the biggest reasons women don’t lift. Women are terrified to enter the gym. They lack confidence and familiarity and aren’t comfortable crossing into a man’s world. Just as large breasts keep women out of the gym, and the fear of a bad hair day keeps them from working out, we can now add weight room woes to the list of reasons we aren’t taking care of ourselves.
Stop resisting. And start resisting!
“Resistance bands are as effect as hand weights,” asserts Fred Devito, a personal trainer who is a big proponent of band workouts, as demonstrated in his Exhale workouts at AcaciaTV. “The value of resistance bands is that they build strength over range of motion, which is the most efficient way to build strength.”
Resistance bands can provide a premium, effective strength workout that you can do just about anywhere! Your bedroom, office, hotel room, backyard, or park can all become your own personal weight room. Another benefit, reports LiveStrong, is that “you can build a lot of strength and speed without increasing muscle mass,” which should quell those typical female fears that weights = bulk. And the varied tensions that the resistance bands come in allow you to really grow and progress your strength program the way you would through three-, five-, or ten-pound weights.
With resistance bands, there’s no counting reps or sets. “You’re finished when you can’t do anymore,” explained Devito. He says to do as many reps as the muscle can withstand.
This functional fitness approach is even ideal for those recovering from an injury. Devito says resistance bands are the equipment of choice for therapists in post-injury rehab.
Here are a few key exercises to try with the resistance band instead of hand weights or machines.
- Biceps curls
- Double arm triceps extension
- Lat pull downs
- Chest press
- Overhead press