June 2, 2017 12:03 PM NPT
A lot of people have become health conscious in the recent years and try to fit in a gym session whenever possible. However, there are times, especially when you are traveling, when you feel like there is no way to fit in any exercises due to restricted space and lack of equipments. This is where the resistance band comes in.
There are three types of bands – one with handles, a loop band and a therapy band that is a lot like a length of rubber. They come at different levels of resistance and you can do almost all the exercises one does at the gym with it. All you need is a good support place where you can loop or attach the band. The Week talked to Sachin Pradhan of Platinum Fitness Center in Ekantakuna, Lalitpur, to guide us through some basic resistance band exercises that we can do anywhere, anytime.
Sculpt your legs
Stand on the band with your feel shoulder width apart. Holding a handle in each hand, pull at the band until the top reaches over your shoulder. The higher you raise the band, the harder it will be because of the tension created in the band. Do a squat with the hand still over the shoulder and don’t let go of the band till you finish 10 reps.
Lying leg curls
Anchor one end of the band close to the floor, on the legs of a heavy table or the door. Loop the other end of the band in your right ankle. Lie down and, tightening your core, bend your legs at the knees and bring your right heel towards the glutes. Don’t push yourself and only push as far as you comfortably can. Slowly bring your legs back down and repeat 15 times for the right leg. Switch sides and do 15 reps on the other side as well.
Sit down and tie the resistance band around your legs, above your knees. Then lie down with your feet on the floor and bend your knees at 90 degrees. Raise your hips till your shoulders, knees and hips align and contract your glutes through the entire movement.
Lateral band walk
You can either use a loop band, or tie a therapy band right above your ankles. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart so that there is tension in the band. Go down on a half squat and shift your weight to the left while stepping sideways with the right leg. Move your standing leg slightly but don’t let the band slack. Take 10 steps on one side before working on the other side.
For your back
Bent over row
Stand over the center of the resistance band with your feet shoulder-feet apart. Bend your knees slightly and hinge at the waist. Make sure you keep your hips back. Grasp the end of the band with the hands facing outside the knees and with bent elbows, pull the band up towards your hips squeezing your shoulder blades together the entire time. Make sure that your elbow forms a 90 degree angle and repeat 12 times.
Sit on the edge of a chair and extend your legs, placing the center of the band behind the soles of your feet. Grabbing the band with both hands, extend your arms and have your palms facing each other. Sit straight and, bending your elbows, pull the band towards your core and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Slowly go back to the starting position and do 12 reps of this.
For this exercise, you need to anchor the band in a low position. After doing this, lie on your back and grab the free end of the band with both hands. Stretch your arms overhead and with the elbows slightly bent, pull on the band. When your hand reaches your knees, slowly return to the starting position and repeat 10 times.
Anchor the resistance band overhead on a horizontal bar (or even a sturdy low hanging branch of a tree) and pull the free ends down to your sides. Kneel down, facing the anchor and grip each end of the band with your arms extending overhead. With your arms slightly wider than shoulder-width, bend the elbows and pull down the band towards the floor as you contract your back muscles. Once your hands reach your shoulders, slowly raise them back into the starting position. Do 15 reps. Toning your arms
You will need a loop band for this, but you can also tie the ends of a regular bad together. Go down on a forward lunge position with your right leg in front and place the middle of the band under your right foot. Grasp an end of the looped band with your right hand and rest your elbows on the inside of your knee. This maneuver targets the biceps a little deeper. Curl the band towards your shoulder, with your palm facing away from your knee. After reaching the shoulder, slowly go back to the starting position and repeat 10 times before switching sides and doing the same with your left arm.
Stand in the middle of the resistance band with your feet shoulder-width apart. Grab hold of a side of the band in each hand and leave it loose at resting position. Slowly pull your arms up to your shoulders, bending at the elbow until you feel contractions in your biceps. Go back to the resting position and do 15 reps of the curl.