Resistance Band Leg Exercises for Strength and Mobility
Resistance band leg exercises are convenient to perform at home and while traveling, which makes it harder for you to find any excuses to not perform some type of daily active movements.
This type of equipment is intended for use a variety of methods, and not stuck to only an exercise or two like machines at the gym. If you’re seeking an affordable way to training your legs, then resistance bands offer a great choice.
Why Choose Resistance Bands?
This equipment takes up little space and can be packed away easily for travel or storage. Aside from convenience, you can use them for the following benefits:
• Strength Training
• Mobility and Flexibility
• Muscle Endurance and Growth
Every type of training is basically included aside from cardio, but you can even perform various exercises in a circuit using bands to get this type of training as well.
This is the type of training everyone wants to focus on, and will carry over to muscle development as well. Strength training is when you perform exercises with resistance to strengthen your muscles, bones, and joint.
Most assume it just means heavy lifting, but that’s not quite what strength training is all about. Strengthening your body helps prevent injuries from occurring by increasing the strength of your bones.
The movements used while strength training with resistance bands move your joints in a variety of ways, which helps make them stronger along with the surrounding muscles.
Resistance bands are even great for senior fitness also. This is due to their ease of use and varying resistances that do not cause impact to the joint and can safely be executed even from a chair.
Mobility and Flexibility
Two different types of training that apply to the same goal. Performing exercises for mobility helps increase the strength of your joints so you can move around with little to no joint pain. Flexibility applies to your muscles and the length they can extend too.
Both keep your body healthy and moving strong as you get into the older years. Those younger benefit greatly using them as a warm up before heavier or isolated lifts for the legs. Either way, mobility and flexibility are functional and needed for health.
Muscle Endurance and Growth
Being able to strengthen your body is great, and as mentioned resistance band exercises help develop your muscles as well. The lean development and fat loss easily come from strength training, but if you see further growth and definition then you can isolate your muscles while using more than with free weights.
When you isolate a muscle, you are targeting a specific area such as your back. Doing so with resistance bands allows your body to activate even more muscles due to the need for better control of the band. Basically, without control against the pull, you have a band ready to just sling back.
Endurance is the ability for your muscles to last longer during physical use. This can be in terms of sports or training for an hour at the gym. Muscle endurance also can be seen as the muscles being strong enough to walk a longer distance, which is great for a senior with difficulty walking.
Resistance Band Leg Exercises
All these exercises help develop strength and muscle in the lower body. The starting four are stretches that improve mobility and flexibility. Primary muscles worked throughout the resistance band leg exercises are you hip flexors, glutes, hamstrings, abductors, and quads.
Pull-Up Assistance Band Leg Exercises
Quad Stretch: Take a full step forward with one foot. Kneel down on the opposing knee and wrap the resistance band around mid-foot. Grasp the band and swing it over your shoulders. Pull down to add resistance and stretch your quad further.
Hamstring Stretch: Stretches both your hamstrings and glutes. Execute by lying on your back with legs extended. Bring one leg up to be vertical with the floor, while the other remains on the floor heel down as best as possible.
Loop one side of the band around the top, mid-foot. Keeping leg straight as possible, slowly pull the band down towards you to fully stretch the hamstring. Stretch for 10-15 seconds during warm up, 25-30 seconds for post training/flexibility.
Groin Stretch: From the hamstring stretch, keeping tension on the resistance band and open your hip to the side with toe pointing out. Hold this position stretching for 10-15 seconds during warm up, 25-30 seconds for post training/flexibility.
Glute Stretch: Following the Hamstring Stretch or Groin Stretch, simply rotate your leg to the opposite. Crossing your leg over your body pulling on the band for tension on the glutes.
Hip Circle Exercises
Hip circle exercises can be used for a warm up prior to squats or deadlifts, or for Olympic weightlifting as well. The importance of warming your hips and glutes up is pretty high when lifting heavy.
You can actually do a pretty good butt workout if this is your area of focus. The development of your glutes has a lot to do with activation through these exercises.
Fire Hydrants: Place the hip circle about 2-3 fingers over your knees. Take a position on all fours with knees lined up below your hips, and hands palms down below your shoulders. Maintaining a straight back, rotate one knee laterally out. Targets your hips and glute muscles.
Leg Kickbacks: Targets your glutes and hips. With the hip circle in the same position above your knees, maintain the same position on all fours as the fire hydrants. Instead of lateral movement, you will push one foot back and up simultaneously.
Clamshell Exercise: Keeping the hip circle place above your knees, lay down on one side of your body with arm down extended out. You can bend at the elbow for comfort and place hand behind your head.
Bring both knees in together to form a 45-degree angle. Execute by simply opening at the knees against the resistance. Targets your glutes, abductors, and hip flexors.
Lying Side Leg Lifts: Slide your hip circle down to the middle of your knees and ankles. Extend both legs out stacked on each other. The free leg will be raised against the resistance staying straight as possible. Works your glutes, abductors, and hip flexors.
You can see that all the stretches and exercises are great for glute development and getting your legs stronger. You’ll have much better mobility and growth as well utilizing the resistance bands for your leg exercises.
For an extra workout to target your thighs and quads better, simply place the hip circle in the above knee position. Execute a squat opening your hips against the band to add more difficulty than a regular body weight exercise.