If you want to build muscle and get stronger, you don't have to lift weights to see results. Resistance bands are an affordable, portable alternative to weights, and you can get started with this quick five-move strength training workout.
While the best resistance bands are often used in Pilates and yoga classes or as a low-impact rehabilitation tool, they can also help you build muscle. The affordable, elasticated bands come in several strengths and are ideal for training on the go.
Working out with resistance bands can also be an excellent introduction to strength training, and this seven-move routine from personal trainer Bradley Simmonds (opens in new tab) is a great place to start.
The video is a collaboration between Simmonds and fellow trainer Rhiannon Bailey. The pair guide you through seven muscle-building exercises, with Simmonds on dumbbells and Bailey training with resistance bands.
There's no specific amount of repetitions or rounds listed. Instead, this tutorial is designed to help you focus on your form, get the most from each exercise, and avoid injury, especially when working with weights.
Watch Bradley Simmonds' strength training workout
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According to Simmonds, they put together the short routine to help you "learn the techniques of key strength exercises, to build your confidence, and to build a level of strength."
The workout includes exercises like bent-over rows, deadlifts, shoulder presses, upright rows, chest presses, bicep curls, and a squat and press combination to round off the routine.
Although resistance bands are an effective alternative to weights, if you do want to start increasing the load, Simmonds' video includes dumbbell versions of each move for you to practice.
And while resistance bands make an ideal companion for at-home workouts because they're easy to store, the same can't be said of most weights. However, investing in a set of the best adjustable dumbbells can help.
These combine several dumbbells into a single weight, allowing you to replicate the gym experience and quickly the load mid-workout, but without finding space for a dumbbell rack at home.
Once you've got a set handy, you can focus on learning how to deadlift with dumbbells. It's a workout staple and is an effective weight lifting move that'll work your lower body and build core strength.
James is a London-based journalist and Staff Writer at Fit&Well. He has over five years experience in fitness tech, including time spent as the Buyer’s Guide Editor and Staff Writer at technology publication MakeUseOf. In 2014 he was diagnosed with a chronic health condition, which spurred his interest in health, fitness, and lifestyle management.
In the years since, he has become a devoted meditator, experimented with workout styles and exercises, and used various gadgets to monitor his health. In recent times, James has been absorbed by the intersection between mental health, fitness, sustainability, and environmentalism. When not concerning himself with health and technology, James can be found excitedly checking out each week’s New Music Friday releases.
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