Illustrations: Jaedoo Lee

A Full-Body Workout That Only Requires a Resistance Band

MMaybe you live in an apartment complex and don’t dare jump rope or slam down a heavy weight. Maybe you wore your one pair of sneakers to go for a run and don’t want to wear them indoors. Or maybe you just want a low-fuss way to get stronger or maintain the strength you’ve already built. These moves, which only require a resistance band, are for you.

“This type of band workout is great to do anytime and anywhere, but especially now during social distancing,” says Michelle Lovitt, an exercise physiologist and strength and conditioning specialist, who designed the workout below. “And when the crisis is over, you can continue doing it, especially when you travel.” All you need is a resistance band and these instructions.

(Note: You may need to experiment with how taut to hold the band for each move to make sure it’s the right level of difficulty — if you’re able to complete the prescribed number of reps with good form but feel like your muscles are very taxed by the final few reps, you’ve nailed it.)

Beginner: One set of 10 reps per exercise.

Intermediate: Two sets of 10–12 reps per exercise.

Advanced: Three sets of 12–15 reps per exercise.

1. Squat press

Hold the band in both hands and step on it with both feet, placing them about hip-distance apart. Keeping your elbows in tight to your sides, bring your hands up to the front of your shoulders. Keeping your hands at your shoulders, squat. As you come up from the squat, drive your hands up into an overhead press.

2. Lateral monster walk

Place the band around your ankles, feet slightly wider than your hips. Tuck your tailbone to activate your glutes and protect your low back. Lower yourself into a squat position, then step to the right, maintaining a wide distance between your feet and making sure not to drag either foot. Repeat to complete your reps, then switch sides and step toward the left.

3. Glute kickback

Get onto your hands and knees. Wrap one end of the band around your right foot and hold the other end with your left hand. Slowly extend at the hip as you lift your right leg until your thigh is in line with your back and your calf is perpendicular to the floor, squeezing your glute hard as you lift. Lower the extended leg slowly, stopping short of the starting position. Repeat to complete your reps and then switch sides.

4. Rear deltoid fly

Hold the band in both hands and step on it with both feet. Bend slightly at the waist. Keeping a slight bend in your elbows, lift your arms out to the side to shoulder height while making sure to keep constant tension on the band and keep your spine in a neutral position.

5. Bent-over row

Center the band under both feet and bend forward at the waist, back flat and core engaged. Grab one end of the band in each hand and bend your elbows to pull your arms up to your torso, squeezing your back and keeping your shoulder blades back and down.

6. Lateral raise

Hold the band in both hands and step on it with both feet. Keeping a slight bend in your elbows, lift your arms out to the side to shoulder height.

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