Though they are just increasing in popularity, resistance bands have been in use for over ten decades. The physical benefits that come with using them have not gone unnoticed by the fitness and rehabilitation organisations.
However, people are often quick to conclude that free weights/ barbells are superior to resistance bands. This couldn't be further from the truth, as numerous studies reveal. Resistance bands promote just as much, if not more, muscle activity during exercise as heavy weights do.
Today we reveal why resistance band exercises are not only beneficial but life-changing without the need for bulky fitness equipment. What makes resistance bands more superior over free weights and barbells? Is it just because they are cheaper? Hardly.
The Benefits of Fitness Bands
Below, are a few of the benefits that come with using resistance bands.
As compared to free- weights and barbells, resistance band sets are very affordable. Of course, this translates to a very cost- effective exercise overall. Resistance bands can easily be added to your already existing workout regimen.
Flexible and Versatile
Resistance bands are extremely versatile. This is in terms of the type of exercises that you can engage in using resistance bands. From chest presses and shoulder presses to squats, there's a lot muscle groups you can actively target with a simple loop band.
Increases Range of Motion
One of the major reasons resistance training is used for rehabilitation purposes is its ability to increase the range of motion. According Range of motion can be described as how far a specific joint or body part can move. The better your range of motion, the more flexible you are, and the easier it is for you to move around.
Helps Build Muscle Mass and Strength
Resistance bands allow progressive resistance that tends to engage the muscle fibres. The amount of force provided by the progressive heavy resistance encourages muscle activity to promote growth. Moreover, the force challenges the muscle fibers, leading to an increase in muscle strength.
Convenient and Durable
Resistance bands are small and lightweight, making it easy to carry and travel with. This allows individuals to work out both at home, at work and even while on vacation. It allows you to keep up with your workout regime regardless of where you are.
Why Are Resistance Bands Considered Superior Over Free weights?
We all know that free weights and barbells, also help increase the range of motion and promote muscle build- up. So, what makes resistance bands so special, other than the fact that they are cheaper and portable?
Where barbells and free weights rely on gravitational force to create resistance while exercising, resistance bands do not. This limits the use of free weights quiet considerably, as you can only use them vertically to increase the gravitational pull.
Resistance bands can be used either horizontally or vertically and still provide enough resistance to engage your muscles. This way, an individual can focus and engage on a variety of muscles in the body effectively. Hence, one can increase the range of motion, flexibility and muscle strength faster.
How To Use Them
As previously mentioned, resistance bands are extremely versatile. They can be used together with other strength training exercises or together with other equipment. However, they are great when it comes to replacing free weight and barbells since they help build better body- form.
You can use them in:
- One leg exercises
- Sitting exercises
- Squatting exercises
- Shoulder Presses
- Bicep curls
- Triceps extensions
Resistance bands are incredibly versatile and effective. The fact that they allow for progressive resistance either vertically or horizontally, makes them effective for building muscle fibres.