Note: I’m writing this on March 19, 2020. COVID-19 is spreading around the globe, and starting to hit America hard. If you’re like me, you check the news obsessively. You worry you will get sick, or that a loved one will die. To top if off, authorities are closing gyms. Yes, it slows down the outbreak. But how can you keep your cool, and keep fit? Bands to the rescue.
So you usually work out at a gym. You lift heavy, and you haven’t got all you need at home to continue training hard. Can you continue building muscle? Yes, with bands.
Sure, dumbbells are a great option (I own a set of PowerBlocks). But they’re expensive, heavy, and limited for pulling movements. If you work out at home with dumbbells, you’ll also need a bar, plates, and a chin-up bar for optimal development. That’s expensive.
Unless you have bands. Bands are cheap, lightweight, and portable. You can do pushing exercises with bands, just as you would with dumbbells. But you can also do pulling exercises, where dumbbells fall short. Bands can also challenge your legs (you’d normally need a bar and plates). Have a look:
Bands are a cheap way to build muscle at home
Bands Exercises to Build Muscle at Home
Build muscle with bands (photo credit Whatafit—no affiliation)
Home Workout to Build Muscle With Bands
Here’s a quick workout you can do at home with bands. It works out your entire body:
- Push-up with bands
- Seated Row with bands
- Shoulder Press with bands
- Band Row
- Triceps Extension with bands
- Band Curl
- Front Squat with bands
- Reps: 8-15 (keep 1-2 reps in reserve)
- Sets: 2-4 (depending on your level—rest-pause sets are more efficient)
- Frequency: 2-4 workouts a week depending on your level and age (fewer if you’re older or very strong, more if you’re young or just starting out)
Bands Are Cheap
Note: I’m not getting paid to recommend any of the following.
While a full set of dumbbells with a bar and plates can cost you $1,000, you can get a full set of bands for as low as $23.99. I’ve used bands with clients, and done a bit of price shopping for this article. Amazon vendors seem to have the best prices, and generous money-back guarantees.
- 100-lbs set for $23.99 or for $26
- 150-lbs set for $36.99 (bought for two clients, they’re happy)
- 190-lbs set for $41.98
Advanced Methods for Your Band Workouts
I made the workout above simple, so you can easily print it and go. But for best results, you may want to look into these proven training methods:
- Daily undulating periodization for faster gains
- New exercises in rotation to hypertrophy all muscle fibres
- Easy workouts to recover and smash new records
They take time to master, but are worth the investment. If you’re looking for a shortcut, you can try our smart workout app, Dr. Muscle. It tells you what to do when you work out, like a personal trainer. And it applies the above methods automatically, plus 19 more.
Note: For a limited time during the COVID-19 outbreak, you can try Dr. Muscle free for 60 days. We’re adding an advanced program with bands to the app (available to all users at no additional cost). We’re also buying a full set of bands to all our current subscribers. Already a customer? If you missed the announcement, email us to get your free set. Be safe!
- A Progressive Overload App to Build Muscle & Strength On Autopilot (It’s Like a Trainer in Your Phone) - November 5, 2020
- Coronavirus, Exercise, and Health: An Evidence-Based Guide for Athletes & Lifters - October 6, 2020
- Working Out & Lifting Weights With a Face Mask: What Do the Experts Say? - August 21, 2020