10 Must-Try Resistance Band Exercises for a Total Body Workout

Get Your Bands On and Flex Your Way to Fitness!ūüí™ūüĒ•

BY DRAPER'S STRENGTH
UPDATED: JUNE 6, 2023

10 Resistance Band Exercises
1. Lateral Deltoid Raise
2. Bicep Curl
3. Overhead Triceps Extension
4. Band Resisted Pull Ups
5. Sumo High Pull
6. Band Assisted Pull Ups
7. Band Deadlift
8. Leg Kickback
9. Band Crunch
10. Resisted Sprint

Resistance bands have become increasingly popular as a versatile and convenient fitness tool that can complement or even replace traditional free weights in many exercises and provide a full-body resistance band workout. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced fitness enthusiast,  incorporating resistance bands into your travel workout routine offers numerous benefits.

"Band training creates a novel training stimulus that fit the rehabilitation and bands provide enhanced postural activation, creating synergy and stability from the muscles surrounding a joint". says Dr. John Rusin. A strength coach, physical therapist, and author. He is the founder of John Rusin Performance, a company that provides fitness and performance training to athletes, coaches, and fitness professionals. Rusin is also the author of several books on strength training and injury prevention, including "The Performance Menu" and "The Resilient Athlete". Rusin is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Florida. He is a certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a certified physical therapist (PT). Rusin has worked with a wide range of athletes, including NFL players, Olympic medalists, and world record-holding powerlifters.

In this blog post, we will explore the 10 best resistance band exercises that target different muscle groups, helping you achieve a well-rounded and effective total body workout.

Exercise 1: Lateral Deltoid Raise

Target: Side Delts

Resistance bands offer an effective way to target and strengthen the side delts with lateral deltoid raises. Place one foot inside of the band. Hold the band with palms facing inward. Extend your arms out to the sides until they are level with your shoulders. Concentrate on engaging your deltoid muscles as you perform the movement.

Compatible with:

Lateral Raise band workout using yellow resistance band

Exercise 2: Bicep Curl

Target: Biceps

Bicep curls with resistance bands help develop strong and defined biceps. Place your foot in the center of the resistance band. Hold the band with your palms facing forward, elbows close to your sides (keep your elbow close to your sides). Slowly curl your hands towards your shoulders, squeezing your biceps at the top of the movement. Maintain control as you lower your hands back down to the starting position, controlling the descent.

Compatible with:

  • Red band
  • Black band
  • Purple band

Fit male athlete performing a bicep curl exercise using exercise bands for a challenging resistance band workout

Exercise 3: Overhead Triceps Extension

Target: Triceps

Overhead triceps extensions using resistance bands effectively target the triceps. Begin by placing one end of the resistance band under your foot. Grasp the band with both hands and lift it overhead. Keep your upper arms close to your head and fully extend your elbows while maintaining tension in the band. Focus on contracting your triceps as you straighten your arms. Return to the starting position slowly and with control.

Compatible with:

  • Yellow band
  • Red band
  • Black band

Woman using resistance bands for overhead triceps extension exercise with stretch bands

Exercise 4: Band Resisted Pull Ups

Target: Back, Shoulders & Arms

Attach the resistance band to the lower part of the pull-up bar. Place either your entire foot or knee beneath the band while firmly holding onto the bar. As you pull yourself up, the band will provide resistance, adding challenge to the movement. Slowly and with control, lower yourself back to the starting position.

Compatible with:

  • Yellow band
  • Red band
  • Black band
  • Purple band

Man performing pull ups with pull up bands and fitness bands for resistance

Exercise 5: Sumo High Pull

Target: Upper Back, Shoulders & Hips

The Sumo High Pull combines bicep curls with a lower body movement, engaging the biceps, hamstrings, and glutes simultaneously. Place the resistance band under your feet with a wide sumo stance. Bend at the hips and grasp the bands with an overhand grip. Pull the band upward rapidly until it reaches your chin, keeping your elbows close to your sides. Slowly and with control, return to the starting position.

Compatible with:

  • Yellow band
  • Red band
  • Black band

Woman performing sumo high pull exercise with gym bands and loop bands for resistance on legs

Exercise 6: Band Assisted Pull Ups

Target: Back & Arms

Band assisted pull-ups are an excellent way to build strength and progress toward unassisted pull-ups. Attach the resistance band to the top of the pull-up bar. Place either your foot or knee into the band while firmly gripping the bar. As you pull yourself up, allow the band to provide assistance and help you with the upward movement. Slowly and with control, lower yourself back to the starting position.

Compatible with:

  • Blue band
  • Green band
  • Purple band

Woman performing band assisted pull ups using yoga bands and exercise resistance bands

Exercise 7: Band Deadlift

Target: Upper Body, Core & Lower Body

The band deadlift adds resistance to this classic lower body exercise, targeting the hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. Place the resistance band under your feet, with your feet shoulder-width apart. Grasp the bands with an overhand grip. Engage your core and use it to pull the band up, raising your chest until you are in an upright position. Be mindful not to round your back as you return to the starting position.

Compatible with:

  • Green band
  • Blue band
  • Orange band

Man performing band assisted deadlift exercise using heavy resistance bands and gym rubber band

Exercise 8: Leg Kickback

Target: Glutes & Hamstrings

Leg kickbacks with resistance bands effectively target the glutes and hamstrings. Position yourself on the floor on your hands and knees. Wrap the resistance band around one foot and hold onto the other end of the band. With the band held tight, perform a kickback motion with your foot, extending it backward. Slowly and with control, return to the starting position. Perform the exercise on both sides to ensure balanced muscle development.

Compatible with:

  • Yellow band
  • Red band
  • Black band

Girl performing leg kickback exercise with the best resistance band and exercise bands

Exercise 9: Band Crunch

Target: Core Muscles

Add resistance to your core workout with band crunches. Securely anchor the resistance band to a sturdy object. Kneel on the ground and grasp the band with both hands. Bend your elbows in front of you at shoulder level, with your forearms pointed outwards. Engage your abdominal muscles and initiate a crunching motion, lowering your torso down while tucking your chin and arching your back. Simultaneously, lower your arms toward your chest.

Compatible with:

  • Yellow band
  • Red band
  • Black band

Woman performing band crunch exercise with fitness bands and stretch band

Exercise 10: Resisted Sprint

Target: Core & Lower Body

Take your cardiovascular training to the next level with resisted sprints using resistance bands. Securely anchor the resistance band to a sturdy object. Step inside the band and secure it around your waist. Assume a running position, lean forward slightly, and drive your legs forward explosively against the resistance. Perform short bursts of high-intensity sprints to challenge your leg power and explosiveness.

Compatible with:

  • Black band
  • Purple band

Woman performing resisted sprint exercise using the best resistance band for men

Insights:

  • Start with a lighter resistance band and progress to heavier resistance as strength improves.
  • Choose a resistance band that targets specific muscle groups and allows for proper form and control.
  • Experiment with different band tensions to find the right level of assistance for proper form and muscle challenge.
  • Use a resistance band that provides enough resistance to challenge various muscle groups while maintaining balance and stability.

Safety Measures:

  • Check the resistance band for wear or damage before use
  • Maintain control, avoiding jerking, excessive swinging, or momentum during movements
  • Be mindful of band tension, avoiding locked elbows or excessive pressure on joints.
  • Ensure the band is securely anchored and positioned correctly to prevent slipping or snapping.
  • Choose a safe area for exercising to prevent accidents.

Enhance your fitness journey with our comprehensive workout guide. This valuable resource offers in-depth instructions and visual demonstrations for a wide range of exercises.

Draper's Strength Resistance Band Free Workout Guide

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