A Total-Body Resistance Band Workout You Can Do Anywhere

Resistance bands are one of the most versatile strength-training tools out there. Unlike dumbbells or kettlebells, which are obviously great but are large and heavy, resistance bands are small, lightweight, and easy to tote around wherever your workouts take you. They can be used to work pretty much every body part. And they don’t put much pressure on your joints.

“Think about pressing a heavy dumbbell overhead and then quickly bending at the elbow to return to neutral. All the weight comes down into your elbow joint,” Melody Scharff, a certified personal trainer at Fhitting Room in New York City, tells SELF. For some people, that can be uncomfortable or cause problems over time. When you use resistance bands, on the other hand, you maintain constant tension in the concentric (lifting) and (lowering) part of an exercise, so there’s no external load putting extra pressure on you. You also are in full control of the resistance, eliminating the change you’ll take on more than you can handle and risk injuring yourself.

Scharff adds that because of this, and because of their versatility, resistance bands are great for so many different groups of people. “I think they are a super approachable tool, so they are good for anyone just getting started in their workout journey. They are super portable so they are good for anyone who travels,” she says.

To help you reap the benefits of resistance bands, Scharff put together a full-body workout that uses nothing more than your and a resistance band.

The overall goal of the workout is to work many different muscle groups—”this leads to a more efficient workout,” Scharff says. “In a full-body program like this, we move from one area of the body to another to allow for recovery while we’re still working.” To get the full benefits, Scharff suggests taking minimal breaks in between each exercise. “Not only are you getting stronger, but the constant movement and change from move to move is really going to keep your heart rate up.” After each round and each circuit, rest for about 60 seconds. (Though if you need to rest more, that’s totally OK. Do what feels best for your body.)

Scharff recommends beginners try this workout two to three times a week to reap the strength-building benefits. If you’re a more advanced exerciser, try choosing a circuit or two to mix into a longer workout.

Modeling the workout below is Teresa Hui, a native New Yorker who has run over 150 road races. She will be running her 12th consecutive New York City Marathon this upcoming November, which will also be her 16th full marathon.

What you’ll need: One light-to-moderate weight looped resistance band, and one light-to-moderate weight resistance band with handles. You can also use a plain resistance band without handles (it is just not as easy to hold onto). There are lots of options here.

Directions

  • Inchworm—5 reps
  • Shoulder Tap—10 reps
  • Squat Thrust—15 reps
  • Air Squat—20 reps
  • Do 3 rounds.

Circuit #1:
Do each exercise for 45 seconds. At the end of each round, do 10 jump squats. Do three rounds.

  • Resistance Band Bicep Curl
  • Plank Up-Down (no band)
  • Resistance Band Lateral Walk
  • Resistance Band Glute Bridge
  • Jump squat (no band) — 10 reps
  • Do 3 rounds.

Circuit #2:
Do each exercise for 45 seconds. At the end of each round, do 20 jump lunges. Do three rounds.

  • Resistance Band Lat Pulldown
  • Push-up (no band)
  • Resistance Band Kneeling Crunch
  • Jump lunge — 20 reps
  • Do 3 rounds.

Circuit #3:
Do each exercise for 45 seconds. At the end of each round, do 10 jump squats. Do three rounds.

  • Resistance Band Upright Row
  • Resistance Band Hinged Row
  • Resistance Band Glute Kickback
  • Resistance Band Thruster
  • Jump Squat (no band) — 10 reps
  • Do 3 rounds.

Here’s how to do each move:

Katie Thompson

Inchworm

  • Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and arms at your sides.
  • Bend at your waist and place your hands on the floor, bending your knees.
  • Walk your hands forward to come into a high plank position with your hands flat on the floor, wrists stacked under your shoulders, and your core, quads, and butt engaged. Pause for a second.
  • Walk your hands back to your feet and stand to return to starting position. That’s 1 rep.
  • Do 5 reps.
Katie Thompson

Shoulder Taps

  • From high plank position, tap your right hand to your left shoulder. Put your hand back down on the floor. Then, do the same with your left hand to your right shoulder.
  • That’s 1 rep. Continue to alternate as quickly as possible for 10 reps.
  • As you tap your hands, keep your core engaged and try to keep your hips stable so that they do not rock from side to side. Move at a quick, but controlled pace.
Katie Thompson

Squat Thrust

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart, core and glutes engaged.
  • Bend your knees and reach forward to place your hands on the floor.
  • Kick your legs straight out behind you so that you are in high plank with your palms flat on the floor, hands shoulder-width apart, shoulders stacked directly above your wrists, legs extended, and core engaged.
  • Jump your feet back in to just outside your hands, and stand up tall. That’s 1 rep.
  • Do 15 reps.

Katie Thompson

Air Squat

  • Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart, toes slightly turned out.
  • Bend your knees and push your hips back as you lower down into a squat. Keep your core engaged, chest lifted, and back flat.
  • Push through your heels to stand back up to the starting position. Squeeze your butt at the top. That’s 1 rep.
  • Do 20 reps.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Bicep Curl

  • Stand with both feet on the resistance band. Hold one end in each hand, arms extended, palms facing forward.
  • Slowly curl your hands up toward your shoulders, squeezing your biceps. Keep your elbows tight to the sides of your body.
  • Slowly lower your hands back down to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Plank Up-Down

  • Start in high plank with your feet hip-distance apart.
  • Lower your right arm down so that your forearm is on the floor. Then, do the same with your left. You should now be in forearm plank position.
  • Place your right hand back on the floor to extend your arm, and follow with your left arm, so that you end back in high plank. That’s 1 rep.
  • As you move, keep your hips as still as possible so that they’re not swaying from side to side.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.

Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Lateral Walk

  • Start in a quarter-squat position (a shallower squat) with a looped resistance band just above your knees.
  • Take a giant step to your right with your right foot, then follow with your left. Take 5 steps in this direction (or as many as your space allows).
  • Step back in the reverse direction, starting each step with your left and then your right, until you return to starting position.
  • Continue this movement, alternating directions each time, for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Glute Bridge

  • Lie on your back with your hands at your sides, knees bent, and feet flat on floor hip-width apart. Loop a medium-strength resistance band around your thighs, just above your knees.
  • Squeeze your glutes and abs and push through your heels to lift your hips a few inches off the floor until your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. Hold this position for a second, making sure to maintain tension in the band so your knees don’t collapse in.
  • Slowly lower your hips to return to the starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Jump Squat

  • Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart.
  • Hinge forward at your hips and sit your butt back into a squat. Squat as deep as your mobility will allow, but not further than parallel to the ground.
  • Jump up into the air as high as you can and straighten out your legs. Swing your arms down by your sides for momentum, and keep your back straight and chest lifted.
  • Land back on the floor with soft knees. That’s 1 rep.
  • Do 10 reps.

Note: You’ll repeat this exercise again later in the workout during the third circuit.

Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Lat Pulldowns

  • Loop the band through a sturdy anchor above you.
  • Get on one knee, planting the other foot in front of you so your quad is parallel to the floor.
  • Grab onto one end of the band with each hand and extend your arms toward the ceiling at a slight diagonal. Your torso should be upright and leaning slightly forward. Keep your core tight, back flat, and chest lifted.
  • Slowly pull your hands down and out to shoulder height. Hold for a moment, squeezing your back and shoulder blades tight.
  • Slowly extend your arms back out to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Push-up

  • Start in a high plank position with your hands flat on the floor about shoulder-width apart, wrists stacked under your shoulders.
  • Keeping your body in one long line and your core engaged, inhale as you bend your arms to lower your chest to the floor.
  • If you can’t maintain a flat back or bend your arms fully so that your chest almost reaches the floor, lower your knees to the floor to do a modified push-up from that position, as pictured above.
  • Exhale as you push back up to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Kneeling Crunches

  • Loop the band through a sturdy anchor above you.
  • Kneel on the floor with your back to the band. Reach over your shoulders to grab onto one side of the band with each hand. Your hands should be resting at the front of your shoulders.
  • Pull the band and bend your torso forward to crunch down against the resistance. Try to keep your arms and legs still, so that the movement is only coming form your core.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.

Katie Thompson

Jump Lunge

  • Stand with feet staggered, right in front of left, with core engaged and hands on hips or at sides.
  • Drop into a lunge by bending both knees to 90 degrees.
  • Now explode up, jumping into the air as high as you can, and straighten out your legs. Swing your arms down by your sides for momentum, and keep your back straight and chest lifted.
  • Land back on the floor with soft knees. That’s 1 rep.
  • Do 10 reps on one side, and then 10 on the other.
  • Alternatively, you can switch legs with each jump so that you are alternating sides.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Upright Row

  • Stand with both feet on the resistance band, about hip-width apart. Hold one end in each hand, arms in front of your body, palms facing you. Depending on the band you’re using, you may need to cross it in front of your body (as shown) to add some more slack.
  • With your back straight, core engaged, and chest lifted, slowly lift your hands to shoulder height. Your elbows should extend out to the sides.
  • Squeeze your shoulder blades at the top and hold for a second.
  • Slowly lower your hands back to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Bent-Over Row

  • Stand with both feet on the resistance band, about hip-width apart. Hold one end in each hand by your sides, palms facing in toward each other. Bend your knees slightly and hinge forward at the hips, keeping your back flat, arms straight, and hands under your shoulders.
  • Bend your elbows to pull the band toward your chest, keeping your elbows close to your body (they should skim your sides).
  • Slowly straighten your arms and lower your hands back to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.

Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Glute Kickback

  • Start on your hands and knees, holding each handle of a resistance band in your hands.
  • Loop the middle of the band around your right foot.
  • Lift your right leg and extend your leg out straight behind you, pushing against the resistance of the band.
  • Slowly bring your leg back to starting position.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.
Katie Thompson

Resistance Band Thruster

  • Stand with both feet on the resistance band, about shoulder-width apart. Grab onto each end of the band and bring your hands to shoulder height. The band should come over the backs of your shoulders, and your elbows should be out to the sides.
  • Hinge forward at your hips and sit your butt back into a squat. Bend your knees as deep as your mobility will allow, but not further than parallel to the ground.
  • Press through your heels to stand up straight. As you stand, press your arms overhead until they are extended fully. Keep your core tight and squeeze your butt at the top.
  • Slowly lower your hands back to your shoulders and your legs back down into another squat.
  • Continue for 45 seconds.

Gifs and image: Photographer: Katie Thompson. Hair grooming: Yukiko Tajima. Makeup: Risako Matsushita. Stylists: Rika Watanabe, Tiffany Dodson.

Model Teresa Hui is a native New Yorker who loves to do the impossible. Once upon a time, she thought that running 2 miles was impossible. Now, she has run over 150 road races. Teresa will be running her 12th consecutive New York City Marathon this upcoming November, which will also be her 16th full marathon. She also loves feeling strong and lifting heavy, and is a firm believer that you can be a fierce badass at any size.

This content was originally published here.

5 thoughts on “A Total-Body Resistance Band Workout You Can Do Anywhere

  • 15/06/2019 at 9:15 pm
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    Reply
  • 25/06/2019 at 4:52 am
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    In December of 2017, Donald Trump made history by recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Why is this big news? Because by this the Jewish people of Israel are now able to press forward in bringing about the Third Temple prophesied in the Bible.

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    “Then a third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends forever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name” (Revelation 14:9-11).

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    “EITHER HUMAN INTELLIGENCE ULTIMATELY OWES ITS ORIGIN TO MINDLESS MATTER OR THERE IS A CREATOR…” – JOHN LENNOX

    We all know God exists. Why? Because without Him, we couldn’t prove anything at all. Do we live our lives as if we cannot know anything? No. So why is God necessary? In order to know anything for certain, you would have to know everything, or have revelation from somebody who does. Who is capable of knowing everything? God. So to know anything, you would have to be God, or know God.

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    It has been calculated by Roger Penrose that the odds of the initial conditions for the big bang to produce the universe that we see to be a number so big, that we could put a zero on every particle in the universe, and even that would not be enough to use every zero. What are the odds that God created the universe? Odds are no such thing. Who of you would gamble your life on one coin flip?

    Is there evidence that the Bible is the truth? Yes. Did you know that the creation accounts listed in the book of Genesis are not only all correct, but are also in the correct chronological order? That the Bible doesn’t say the Earth was formed in six 24-hour days but rather six long but finite periods of time? That the Bible makes 10 times more creation claims than all major “holy” books combined with no contradictions, while these other books have errors in them? The Bible stood alone by concurring with the big bang saying, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1); and says our universe is expanding, thousands of years before scientists discovered these things. Watch a potential life-changing video on the front page of http://WWW.BIBLEFREEDOM.COM with Astronomer(PhD) Hugh Ross explaining all these facts based on published scientific data. He has authored many books, backed even by atheist scientists.

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    Jesus came to free us from the bondage of sin. The everlasting fire was prepared for the devil and his angels due to disobedience to God’s law. If we do the same, what makes us any different than the devil? Jesus says unless we repent, we shall perish. For sin is the transgression of the law. We must walk in the Spirit so we may not fulfill the lusts of the flesh, being hatred, fornication, drunkenness and the like. Whoever practices such things will not inherit the kingdom (Galatians 5:16-26). If we sin, we may come before Jesus to ask for forgiveness (1 John 2:1-2). Evil thoughts are not sins, but rather temptations. It is not until these thoughts conceive and give birth by our own desires that they become sin (James 1:12-15). When we sin, we become in the likeness of the devil’s image, for he who sins is of the devil (1 John 3:8); but if we obey Jesus, in the image of God. For without holiness, we shall not see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14).

    The oldest religion in the world is holiness through faith (James 1:27). What religion did Adam and Eve follow before the fall? Jesus, Who became the last Adam, what religion does He follow? Is He not holy? He never told us to follow the rituals and traditions of man but to take up our cross and follow Him (Luke 9:23). There are many false doctrines being taught leading people astray. This is why we need the Holy Spirit for discernment. Unlike religion, holiness cannot be created. It is given to us from above by the baptism of the Spirit. Jesus is more than a religion; He is about having a personal relationship with the Father. Start by reading the Gospel of Matthew, to hear the words of God, to know His character and commandments. Follow and obey Jesus, for He is the way, the truth, and the life!

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