One of my favourite tools for quick and versatile strength workouts is the super band. It’s a big loop shaped piece of exercise tubing which comes in varying levels of tension. I love the 1/2 inch bands because they are super easy to pack on vacations (or to the park with my little one) and I can get a full body workout in using this single tool.
The super band is an incredibly cost effective addition to any home gym, and even doubles as a great dynamic stretching assistant during warm-ups and cool downs.
Here are 5 of my favourite muscle building super band exercises:
Super Band Straight Arm Power Pulldowns
Equipment: Super band exercise tubing, horizontal bar/hook or railing to attach tubing.
Cues: Hinge at hip and keep this slightly bent over body position through out the exercise. Avoid rounding through the mid and upper back. Use the muscles at the outside of your armpits to pulldown and exhale at the same time.
Super Band Single Leg Deadlift
Strengthens glutes, hamstrings, core.
Equipment: Super band exercise tubing, dumbbells or kettlebells.
Cues: Keep elevated leg active by pushing into the super band tubing. Standing leg is bent and the entire leg is engaged, right down to the toes. Hinge at the hip rather than rounding the spine. Exhale on the way up and focus on engaging glutes, hamstrings and core as you breathe out and move upward to standing.
Super Band Pull Aparts
Strengthens posterior deltoids, rhomboids (the muscles of the mid back and posterior shoulder).
Equipment: Super band exercise tubing.
Cues: Avoid hyperextending your elbows. Keep rib cage stacked right over top of hip bones and a neutral spinal alignment. When opening up the tubing, activate the movement with the back of your shoulders rather than hunching up with the muscles at the base of your neck.
Super Band Standing Hip Extension
Equipment: Super band exercise tubing, vertical bar, hook or post to attach tubing.
Cues: Maintain connection with ribs and hips even though you are slightly hinging at your hips. Let the extension come from the glutes and hips primarily, not from excessive arching of the low back. Press back with the heel.
Super Band Quadruped Hip Extension
Strengthens glutes + core.
Equipment: Super band exercise tubing, mat.
Cues: Keep shoulders stacked over wrists. When pressing back with the heel, do not drop or arch through the low back. Let the glutes do the extension work and the core do the stabilizing work.
*Note: while both hip extension exercises look similar, the quadruped option gives an extra core challenge because of our body’s position in relation to gravity.
Add the exercises above into your workouts by starting with 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions. When paired with consistent strength training and balanced, healthy eating habits you’ll be seeing more muscle definition in no time.
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