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How to Use Stretch Bands for Strength Workouts

Weight Training with Bands and Tubes


Updated May 23, 2012

Muscle size and strength increases when you load a muscle with tension over time. Various types of stretch bands and tubes can place the muscles under load and can be useful for beginners and home training.

These materials are comparatively inexpensive and can be used at home and in rehabilitation settings. The following exercises demonstrate what can be done with stretch bands and tubes. Many more exercises are possible.

The first is a band 'fly' for the back muscles. This can also be done overhead. Second is a seated arm curl for the biceps, and the third is a front (anterior) raise for the shoulder deltoid muscles.

1. Flys with Bands

Flys with bands
(c) TrainerClipArt.com

For this exercise you wrap the bands around you hands at a distance apart that will allow you to extend the arms, stretching the bands, across your chest to full width. Squeeze the shoulder blades together as you pull.

This is a workout for the upper back muscles. The exercise can also be performed overhead with more involvement of the shoulders. Do 3 sets of 12 exercises.

2. Arm Curl with Bands

Arm curl with bands
(c) TrainerClipArt.com

In this exercise, bands are passed under the feet and then wrapped around the hands.

Sit on a fitness ball or a chair. Band length should be adjusted to achieve a suitable tension to enable you to complete an arm curl under load. The biceps muscle of the upper arm is the target of the exercise.

Bands can be adjusted to work one or two arms in the exercise movement. Do 3 sets of 12 exercises.

3. Front Raise with Bands

Anterior raise with bands
(c) TrainerClipArt.com

In the front (anterior) raise, you place the bands under the feet while wrapped around the hands with palms face down.

The tension should be adjusted so that you commence the pull from about thigh level until the arms are out in front of you.

The arms should be kept almost straight yet with a slight bend at the elbow. Do 3 sets of 12 exercises.

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