There’s a misconception that resistance bands are for guys recovering from injury and yoga women. Compared to a heavy set of dumbbells there’s just no way you can get a decent enough workout from some elastic to stimulate the same kind of growth right? They’re pretty much glorified elastic bands with handles on the end!
That’s the view of many but it is not in fact a fair one. You see, your muscle really can’t tell the difference between the resistance that comes from dumbbells and the resistance that comes from a band. And actually, the light nature of resistance bands gives them some real advantages over weights…
Why Resistance Bands Rock
One benefit that a resistance band offers over weights is that it provides you with a more consistent resistance. When you perform something like a bench press with dumbbells for instance, you’ll find that there are points where the resistance isn’t really there: such as when the arms are fully locked out.
Resistance bands on the other hand will be continuously pulling against you with pressure ensuring you experience the same amount of resistance all the way through the movement. The result is that you can build muscle much more evenly extend your range of motion. When pressing bands for instance, they pull outward to the side and ensure you never get that chance to ‘rest’.
But while the resistance is more even, it’s not completely even. In other words, the band gets tougher the more taught it has been pulled. This means you’ll get a completely different experience to normal training with the band.
And then of course there’s the benefit of having something so small and light that can easily be flung into a bag.
Resistance Bands for Triceps
Resistance bands are great for isolation and perfect for the sometimes hard-to-hit triceps. Perform the following exercises with the bands for a decent workout:
- Tricep dips
- Overhead band extensions
- Single hand overhead arm extensions
Start with the kickbacks, using a doorhandle or similar to lock the band in place. The further away you stand, the harder this will be – which gives you a great way to perform a steady drop set by moving towards the door as you start to fail. Continue to failure.
Next up are tricep dips. These are a great bodyweight move for triceps that don’t utilize the band. The band comes in for the next one though: overhead band extensions. We’re performing these two as a superset which means they’ll be performed back-to-back with no rest period in-between. Perform for several sets.
Finally, single handed overhead arm extensions with the band will really push you and will offer a nice change of pace from dumbbells. Stand on the other end of the band and then feel the movement get harder as you get higher up.
So how do you use this workout? This should not be used to replace your current tricep workout but what it is, is a great tool for working out on the move. And because you’re mixing up your usual training, you’ll find your body actually responds very positively to this – it’s not a case of ‘it will do’ but rather an actual bonus as far as your progress is concerned. But it must be used sparingly.
Finally, remember that you can always double up the bands if you’re finding it too easy!