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RESISTANCE BAND BUYING GUIDE

A BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO RESISTANCE BANDS

If you are wondering what those colourful bands are that you’ve seen in gyms and other sports facilities then you’ve come to the right place!

Our comprehensive guide to resistance bands covers everything there is to know about a product that has seen its popularity boom in recent years. From what they are and how they can be used, to the types of bands available and their benefits, you’ll find all of the information you need in our resistance band buying guide.

You can either read the complete guide or navigate to a specific topic by clicking the links in the list below.

  • Introduction to resistance bands
  • Are resistance bands as good as weights?
  • What can resistance bands be used for?
  • Types of resistance bands
  • Using resistance bands with other equipment
  • Resistance bands for sport
    • Resistance bands for boxers & martial arts
    • Resistance bands for football
    • Resistance bands for golf
    • Resistance bands for rugby
    • Resistance bands for tennis
  • Choosing a resistance band

INTRODUCTION TO RESISTANCE BANDS

What are resistance bands?

Resistance bands are a convenient and highly effective exercise tool that are popular with people of all fitness levels. Typically made of rubber or latex, resistance bands are literally ‘bands’ that are either flat or tubular in shape. Originally used as a post-injury rehabilitation tool, they are now touted by everyone from famous strength and conditioning coach Jeff Cavaliere to actors such as Sylvester Stallone as they are an excellent piece of equipment for fitness and bodybuilding.

Resistance bands are extremely versatile and easy to store. Whether they are looped around poles, attached to doors or clipped to your ankles, they can be used for a vast array of workouts aimed at building everything from cardiovascular fitness to powerlifting strength. In short, resistance bands have something to offer everyone.

The benefits of resistance bands

Resistance bands have become extremely popular in recent years as they are easy to use, low in cost and very effective. Below we've outlined many of the benefits that make resistance bands so popular:

  • They are extremely versatile
  • They are relatively inexpensive
  • They are easy to transport, store and carry
  • They are great for building explosive power
  • They can be used in indoors or outside
  • They are kind to joints and provide low impact workouts
  • They can be used to improve coordination
  • They work core muscles effectively
  • They can be used by people of all fitness levels
  • They make it easier to learn resistance exercise techniques
  • They have a very low risk of injury

As you can see from the list above, the advantages of resistance bands are plentiful! It’s no wonder they’ve become so popular. Physical therapists and physiotherapists have used resistance bands for decades to rehabilitate injuries and imbalances. In more recent times they have grown in popularity within the fitness and bodybuilding communities thanks to their unmatched versatility, ability to isolate specific muscle groups and because they are so practical and convenient to use.

One of the great things about resistance bands is that they can be used to achieve almost any fitness-related goal, and they are great for home as well as gym-based workouts. Whilst other popular gym equipment requires a certain amount of space to use, you can easily perform a resistance band workout in your bedroom or living room.

Resistance bands are also extremely versatile in terms of the number and type of exercises that can be performed with them. Bands can be used to do everything from building muscle and developing explosive power, to improving flexibility.

Resistance Band StretchResistance Band Stretch

Are resistance bands effective?

Resistance bands are highly effective. There is a growing body of scientific literature confirming that resistance bands are excellent tools for building muscle, increasing mobility, reducing arthritic pain and enhancing core stability and balance.

Many advocates state that resistance bands can be kinder on the joints than weights and resistance machines. They can be used by everyone from gym novices to world class athletes to build muscle, maintain mobility and to increase power & speed.

Bands can provide a vast range of resistance - from a few kilograms up to well over one hundred kilograms of elastic ‘weight’. Popular with powerlifters, resistance bands can be used instead of free weights and machines to build muscle, or they can be used together to create an advanced strength or bodybuilding workout.

Resistance Band Bicep CurlResistance Band Bicep Curl

ARE RESISTANCE BANDS AS GOOD AS WEIGHTS?

Resistance bands are incredibly convenient, safe and easy to use - but are they as effective as weights when it comes to building muscle and getting in great shape?

Resistance bands vs weights

Both resistance bands and free weights are excellent tools for developing strength and muscle mass. A peer-reviewed study published in 2019 compared the effect of resistance bands and conventional training - using free weights and resistance machines, on the development of strength.

The study concluded that:

Elastic resistance training is able to promote similar strength gains to conventional resistance training

A growing number of scientific literature has come to a similar conclusion - that resistance bands are an excellent, inexpensive and practical tool for building strength and developing muscle mass.

Whilst resistance bands may build muscle in similar fashion to free weights and machines, they typically come with a lower risk of injury. This lower injury risk may be partly due to a resistance bands use of consistent, progressive elastic resistance, as opposed to the gravitational resistance incorporated with free weights.

For example, when a bicep curl is carried out using a dumbbell, the force is greatest at one point - when the arm is bent at 90 degrees. However, a resistance band provides a more consistent amount of elastic resistance that increases gradually as the band is pulled and moves upwards during the curling movement. This constant tension means that there is a gradual force applied to the muscle and no sudden shock or strain on the joint.

With a dumbbell curl, users will also be more likely to thrust their hips forwards and use incorrect form to get the weight past the 90-degree sticking point. Because resistance bands don't have a specific sticking point, there is no need to drive and use momentum to get the weight beyond a particular part of the movement. This more consistent tension and resistance is one reason why physiotherapists tend to use bands rather than free weights in rehabilitation programmes following injury.

The main injury risk in relation to resistance bands, comes with poor-quality bands snapping, or letting go of the band when it is under tension. You should also make sure that your bands are firmly anchored under your feet or to an attachment point when in use.

WHAT CAN RESISTANCE BANDS BE USED FOR?

One of the best things about resistance bands is that they can be used to target and develop every element of fitness. From power to endurance training, resistance bands can do it all...

The benefits of resistance bands

One of the most common questions relating to resistance bands is “do resistance bands build muscle?” and in short the answer is "yes!" - resistance bands build muscle very efficiently. To build muscle (a process known as "hypertrophy"), muscles need to be put under tension.

A muscle does not have to be put under a particular type of tension to grow, so whether you use weights or resistance bands does not matter.One advantage of resistance bands when it comes to building muscle is the bodybuilding concept of "time under tension". Many bodybuilders state that as well as lifting heavy weights to build muscle, those looking for muscle growth should also include sets and exercises that focus on 40-60 seconds of time under tension.

Bands provide constant, variable tension and are ideally suited for arm exercises such as bicep curls by providing resistance throughout the range of motion. Resistance bands can also be used to perform partial reps with a limited risk of injury.

For example, when you can no longer perform a complete repetition of a bicep curl with a band, you can look to perform 2 or 3 partial repetitions, whereby you move the band just a couple of inches upwards from the starting position.

The key to muscle growth with or without equipment is to ensure that you incorporate tension and progressive overload. Progressive overload means increasing the weight gradually as it gets more manageable for the user to lift. This increase can be achieved with free weights and machines by increasing the weight gradually over time.

This increase in resistance can also be produced with resistance bands by increasing the distance from the anchor point or increasing the band tension by widening your stance as you stand on the band. Alternatively; to increase the ‘weight’ and tension, you can use a thicker band with greater resistance.

Resistance Band Press UpResistance Band Press Up

Resistance bands and flexibility

Resistance bands are great for increasing mobility and flexibility. For example, if you have an office job and sit at a desk all day, resistance band exercises can be an effective way to increase the mobility of the thoracic spine and improve posture. Exercises such as “standing shoulder pass throughs” can be used to increase upper body and upper back mobility.

In addition to mobility exercises, resistance bands can also be used to stretch, just like you would without any equipment - with the band allowing you to get deeper or go further into a given pose.

The hip flexor and hamstring muscles are notoriously tight in office workers and athletes including football players. Resistance bands can be hooked around a pole or held by a partner and looped around the leg to provide a highly effective hip flexor stretch. Bands can also be looped over the foot to provide a deep stretch of the hamstring and calf muscles whilst lying on your back.

Resistance bands and injury prevention

Most resistance band exercises work the core in a highly effective manner. For example, standing chest press using a resistance band and a door anchor uses the core muscles to stabilize the body in a standing position whilst pressing the bands forwards.

Resistance bands also have to be stabilized and controlled by 'fixator' muscles when performing exercises such as the shoulder press or military press. This strengthens muscle groups such as the rotator cuff muscles, which reduces the risk of injuries including dislocations.

Lighter resistance bands are also ideal for performing prehab and rehab exercises that target injury-prone areas of the body such as the shoulders, hips and knees. With professional guidance and great attention to technique, resistance bands can also be an excellent tool for strengthening and protecting the neck from injuries that can occur in sports such as rugby and MMA.

Resistance bands are often used for exercises such as lateral band walks and can be looped around the legs (usually just above the knees) to help prevent injuries and improve movement mechanics. They can also be used for “glute activation” exercises, which can help ‘fire up’ the muscles in the glutes, which can reduce the risk of back injuries when performing exercises including barbell squats.

Resistance bands for weight loss

In order to lose weight and promote fat loss, an individual must elicit an "energy deficit" which in simple terms means that more calories are burnt than are consumed. In addition to a calorie-controlled diet, resistance bands can help users lose weight. Bands can be used to create fat-burning workouts, that consume a high volume of calories, which in turn will help promote fat loss.

One of the main benefits of using resistance bands to get in shape is that they can be used to efficiently build muscle at the same time as stimulating fat loss. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn at rest. While cardiovascular exercises such as running can burn more calories per session, studies suggest that resistance training can help you to increase your resting metabolic rate.

The great thing about resistance bands is that they can be used by people of all fitness levels and experiences, with minimal risk of injury. The main thing to be sure of is that you adopt proper/appropriate posture and secure the band firmly either using an anchor or the bottom of your foot or feet.

A great way to lose weight and body fat with resistance bands is to perform a circuit of exercises for ten minutes per day. This circuit could incorporate exercises such as bicep curls, thrusters, squats, lateral raises, front raises, glute bridges, glute kickbacks and lateral band walks. As you get stronger you can increase the duration of the circuit or look to use bands with a greater level of resistance. As you progress, you can also add bodyweight exercises such as burpees and running on the spot. Resistance bands and bodyweight exercises can be used together to create exercise circuits and sessions that are suitable for beginners and advanced gym-goers looking to reduce body fat.

Resistance Band RowResistance Band Row

Resistance bands for fitness

Regardless of your age and current activity level, resistance bands are great when it comes to developing a foundation of health, fitness and wellbeing. Different scientists and physical trainers will breakdown the components of fitness slightly differently, however, as a guideline fitness can be broken down to include:

  • Strength
  • Power
  • Cardiovascular fitness
  • Flexibility
  • Body composition
  • Muscular endurance
  • Balance
  • Coordination

Resistance bands can be used to effectively and efficiently target each element of fitness listed above. For example, bands can be used with relatively high resistance to develop strength, whilst cardiovascular health and muscular endurance can be developed by creating a circuit of resistance band exercises.

Resistance bands are also excellent for developing balance and core strength. As so many band exercises can be carried out in a standing position, they can be used to strengthen the core and improve balance efficiently. Standing hip extensions and hip abduction exercises with a TPE or fabric band, for example, are highly effective for improving balance and core strength.

By working the muscles through a full range of motion, bands can also be used to maintain or improve mobility and flexibility, whilst learning new band exercises can help users to develop coordination and body awareness/proprioception. Because bands can be used to build muscle as well as burn fat, they are also an effective tool when it comes to optimising body composition.

TYPES OF RESISTANCE BANDS

Resistance bands are now a must-have piece of gym equipment but what type of band should you buy/use? The answer to this largely depends on your fitness goals and the type of exercise you are looking to engage in. A heavy weight powerlifter looking to increase lock out strength on deadlifts will probably want a different type of band than someone looking to tone up their glutes and upper legs.

Fabric resistance bands

Mini looped bands are typically available in one of two materials – fabric or latex/TPE. The main advantage of fabric mini resistance bands is that they tend to be more comfortable and they are less likely roll up, pinch or move when in use. Commonly used to isolate and work the glutes or butt, fabric bands are also used by weightlifters to correct and help maintain correct squatting and deadlifting technique.

Usually placed just above the knees for glute exercises, it's important to get the resistance right so that additional muscles are not recruited to help out with resistance that's too great for your hips or glutes to handle on their own.

Also called "booty bands" and "hip bands", METIS fabric resistance bands come in sets of 3, with a light, medium and heavy resistance level. This range of bands and resistance levels is ideal in that it's extremely likely that you'll need different levels of resistance for different exercises and you'll need to increase the resistance as you progress.

METIS fabric resistance bands contain natural rubber so that they stretch, and they are covered with a soft polyester and cotton blend for comfort and stability. They are perfect for performing exercises such as hip bridges, lateral walks and squats.

Fabric Resistance BandsFabric Resistance Bands
Looped resistance bandLooped resistance band

Latex or TPE resistance bands

While fabric resistance bands are ideal for those looking to activate specific muscles with optimal comfort levels, TPE resistance bands are more elastic and better suited to specific exercises such as hip abductor movements and speed drills.

Latex mini bands are popular with athletes and serious sportsmen and women. Usually wrapped around the ankles or just above the knees, they can be used to add resistance to warm-up exercises such as push up plank walks. The bands can also be used to perform hip flexion and extension exercises and are commonly used in combination with free weights to perform hip bridges/raises and squats.

Favoured by many sprinters, latex looped mini bands are also used for foot speed drills. Wrapped around the ankles, the bands' resistance forces the feet to move quickly when performing exercises such as scissors and lateral in and out squats.

Static hold exercises with mini latex bands are also popular. Touted as a direct and highly effective way to build core strength, static holds can also help to build joint stability and resiliency. Lighter bands are great for static holds and small movements like hip abduction exercises, whilst stronger bands are ideal for larger movements and exercises such as lunges which require thicker bands with more resistance.

For this reason TPE bands are great for rehab and prehab exercises as they tend to be more flexible with less resistance. Our packs of 4 mini bands are extremely popular as they are cost effective, versatile (they offer 4 different resistance levels) and easy to clean.

Long resistance bands

Also referred to as "power resistance bands" and “looped resistance bands”, long resistance bands are longer than standard workout bands as the name suggests! The extra band length means they are suited to different exercises than standard length resistance bands. Long power bands are great for assisting with exercises like pull-ups, whilst they can also be used to add additional resistance to movements such as press-ups and squats.

Looped bands are a common sight at powerlifting gyms and were made popular by legendary, record-breaking gym ‘WestSide-Barbell’. They were big advocates for combining bands with free weights and nowadays this is an approach used in most gyms, as the combination of bands and free weights help users build power and strength in different parts or sections of specific lifts and exercises such as bench presses, deadlifts and back squats.

Due to the benefits mentioned above power bands are also excellent for Olympic lifters and athletes looking to develop explosive speed. A study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, for example, showed that resistance-trained volunteers performing back squats with resistance bands on a Smith machine increased "peak power" more than those who performed the exercise without any bands.

Whilst we’ve covered that long resistance bands are used by Olympic and powerlifters, they can also be used by those with less experience. In fact, they can be used by pretty much anyone during workouts. It’s worth noting that there are certain exercises such as assisted pull ups using chin up bars (which we cover in more detail here) that need to be approached with some caution (make sure that both the band and the pull up bar are attached securely and use a spotter or partner the first time you attempt a resistance band assisted pull up). There are plenty of other exercises however that are straightforward, easy to do and don't require a partner.

Strong resistance bandsStrong resistance bands
Resistance band setResistance band set

Resistance bands with handles

Sometimes referred to as “resistance tubes”, resistance bands with handles are excellent for performing bodybuilding exercises such as bicep curls, tricep extensions and shoulder presses. When used along with an ankle strap and door frame attachment, dozens of functional exercises can also be performed. Resistance bands with ankle straps can be ideal for replicating sports-specific movements, such as knee strikes and front kicks used in martial arts. Bands with ankle straps can also be used to develop strength and power in the hip-flexors, which in turn can help athletes increase their speed and acceleration.

Resistance bands with handles, such as those that come with the METIS Pulley System have many benefits:

  • They can be used with attachments for leg and core workouts
  • They can be used with door anchors for whole-body workouts
  • They are easy and comfortable to grip
  • They are ideal for bicep curls, military press and lateral raises
  • They are simple to use

Door anchors provide yet another level of versatility and functionality to resistance bands with handles. One important tip when using door-anchor resistance bands is to always attach the door anchor to the hinge-side of the door unless you are going to lock the door - then it can be attached to either side.

RESISTANCE BANDS COMBINED WITH OTHER EQUIPMENT

If resistance bands weren’t already versatile enough, they can be combined with other fitness and strength equipment to produce advanced workouts and impressive gains in strength.

Resistance bands with free weights

Both resistance bands and free weights such as barbells can be used in isolation to produce remarkable gains in strength and muscle mass. However, by combining and attaching resistance bands to free weights, there may be some additional benefits.

Whilst free weights often provide the most resistance near the start of the movement, resistance bands provide the most resistance when they are taught - usually near the end of an exercise. For example, with barbell bench press, the sticking point is often right at the start, or near the start of the exercise’s movement, whilst resistance band press ups and presses are most difficult when the arm gets closer to full extension.

Many bodybuilders and recreational weightlifters combine longer looped bands with barbells, so that they tax the muscles during the start and the end of a resistance exercise. Resistance bands will also make lowering a weight more challenging. This can increase “time under tension”, making your workouts more efficient and effective.

Combining resistance bands with barbells was made popular among powerlifters thanks to pioneering coach and weightlifting champion Louie Simmons. In order to use a band with a barbell, you will need to install an attachment point on the floor or the rack. Bands are normally attached close to the collar on the barbell, with the weight plates placed as closely as possible to prevent the bands from moving around. The main advantage of using bands with barbells, is that powerlifters can develop greater “lock-out strength” at the top of the lift.

Resistance bands with kettlebells

Resistance bands such as the METIS Power Bands can also be combined with ketllebells to provide a huge range of interesting and functional exercises. Resistance bands can be used to develop balance and proprioception by making kettlebell exercises harder to stabilise and control.

With professional supervision, you can for example, loop a band around a kettlebell handle and perform a kettlebell/resistance band curl while holding onto the band, with the kettlebell suspended in the air. The kettlebell will move around and be challenging to control. As a result, this exercise will build the stabilising and ‘fixator’ muscles in your arms, shoulders and core, as you fight to control the movement of the exercise.

With caution, resistance bands can also be used with exercises such as kettlebell swings, to develop more strength at the lock-out phase, or the top of the swing. Bands can also help the user to develop more “eccentric” or "negative" strength too. Eccentric muscle contractions relate to the strength required to control any form of resistance whilst your muscle or muscles are lengthening. A good example is a bicep curl - eccentric strength is required to lower a weight or band under control, as you extend your arm and revert back to the starting position with a straight arm. In the example of a kettlebell swing, a resistance band will make it more challenging to control the pace of the kettlebell as you lower it back down to the starting position close to your legs. Always start off with a thin or light resistance band before moving onto thicker bands which provide more resistance; as eccentric strength training with kettlebells and bands is quite an advanced form of exercise.

Fabric and smaller resistance bands can be used in combination with kettlebells to perform exercises such as goblet squats. The bands are typically placed or wrapped around the lower thighs to encourage correct squatting technique and glute activation. Always practice caution when combining bands with kettlebells for additional resistance, as generally speaking they are advanced exercises.

Resistance band squats for glutesResistance band squats for glutes

Resistance bands with dip bars

Dips are a fantastic exercise for developing the forearms, shoulders, chest and triceps. They are also a highly effective exercise for developing core strength and stability. Unfortunately, many beginners have difficulty with the exercise, and bodyweight dips are too advanced and too difficult to perform.

If you have difficulty performing regular dips using parallel bars, then you can use resistance bands for assistance. You can use a looped resistance band to help support you throughout the range of the dips exercise. Take a looped band and place it underneath your hands, so that you are gripping both the dips-bars and the band, with the middle of the band sagging in between the parallel bars.

If possible, place your knees so that they are resting on top of the band in between the parallel bars - you may need a partner or trainer to help you do this the first time. The band should be taught enough to help support your weight and also help you to balance and stabilise your body as you perform your dips. When you get comfortable and can perform ten or more dips at once with a given resistance band, consider using a thinner or lighter band, until you can eventually perform the exercise without any support at all.

Pull Ups with a Resistance BandPull Ups with a Resistance Band

Resistance bands with pull up bars

Whilst bands are often used to create an extra level of difficulty and resistance to many exercises, a highly popular use for bands is to assist with chin-ups and pull-ups. Chin-ups (performed with a "supinated grip" with palms facing towards you) and pull ups (performed with a "pronated grip" with your knuckles facing towards you) are regarded by many fitness professionals as one of the best exercises you could do to develop strength and fitness. Both Chin-ups and pull-ups are great for building the muscles in the upper back, the biceps, shoulders and the core.

The main issue with chin-ups for many, however, is that they are quite an advanced exercise and not many people can do them without months of practice. With resistance bands, beginners can experience the benefits of chin-ups without risking injury. Bands are so effective that “Pull Up Resistance Bands” are incredibly popular, and it’s no wonder, considering how effective chin ups and pull ups are.

It’s always advisable to have a professional supervise when you attempt band chin-ups for the first time. If you are using a door frame pull up bar, double-check it is fixed securely. Tie a looped band around the pull up bar and place your knee inside it. With thinner, more flexible pull up bands you can stretch them down further and place the bottom of your foot or feet in the band. Grab onto the bar with your arms shoulder-width apart. To perform a chin-up, you will want to grip the bar with your palms facing towards you. The band should assist you by pulling you upwards towards the bar. The band should also help you to stabilise your body weight so that you don’t swing around whilst performing the chin up.

It is important to use a band that's the correct thickness. If the band isn’t thick enough and doesn’t provide enough support, then the chin-up could still be too difficult. Again, working with a fitness professional, to begin with, can be helpful, so that you start with the right thickness band. As you progress and can perform ten or more chin-ups, you should consider using a thinner band that provides slightly less support. You can even progress to the point where you use a resistance band anchored to the floor or to a partner, to provide additional resistance - to make pull ups harder rather than easier!

RESISTANCE BANDS FOR SPORT

Decades ago, the use of resistance bands was often confined to the physiotherapist’s clinic. In recent years however, resistance bands have become a common sight at professional and elite training grounds, gyms and performance institutes.

Resistance bands for boxers & martial arts

Resistance bands are popular with boxers and martial artists as they allow users to engage in strength and power exercises which closely replicate techniques including kicks and punches. Punching techniques, carried out with resistance bands can build power and strength, without negatively impacting technique. Whilst many boxers choose to punch with dumbbells for building strength, power and endurance, the fact that free weights apply a downward, gravitational force and require a tense grip, can impact the development of optimal punching technique.

According to most boxing coaches, when delivering a punch the upper body should be fluid and relaxed, before tensing up on the point of impact. Resistance bands can provide elastic resistance that increases as the arm lengthens towards the end of the punch. This encourages the boxer to develop maximum force at the point of impact, in line with technical best practice.

Pulling with resistance bands can also be used to develop a powerful counter movement that initiates a punch. For example, if a boxer is looking to develop a powerful left hook, a band anchored in front of the boxer at shoulder-height and held in the right hand, can be used to develop powerful retraction of the right shoulder and rotation of the upper body in clockwise direction. This rotation of the upper body in a clockwise motion, helps the boxer to develop a powerful core and optimal biomechanics, for throwing a left-handed punch. This exercise can also be done by pulling a band with the left hand, rotating the upper body in an anti-clockwise motion - building the power that can be delivered with a right handed punch.

With the METIS Pulley System door anchor, it's easy to perform standing band exercises. Using an anchor, you can add a range of pulling exercises to your resistance band workouts, such as standing rows, and rotational twists. Using a door anchor opens up an additional range of core and chest exercises, including twisting wood chops and single arm standing chest presses, which are highly functional boxing and martial arts movements.

Standing band exercises are in general, great for sport-specific training - as most sports are carried out whilst standing. Using bands with a door attachment allows you to perform exercises such as resistance band punches that accurately replicate the movements and the stances used in boxing. Our pulley resistance bands vary in resistance, from 11lb to 44lb (5kg to 20kg). The great thing is that you can combine all of the bands together to produce over 100lbs (45kg) of resistance - so you can experience the benefits of an expensive weightlifting machine with one set of bands.

Resistance bands for football

Whilst lighter resistance bands have been used for many years by footballers and physiotherapists to treat injuries, they are commonly used by professional players and fitness coaches to help develop speed, power and agility.

Resistance bands can improve foot speed or ‘cadence’ by pulling or pushing your feet into specific positions at a speed greater than you can achieve without a band. They can also build strength and power in specific muscles that are used in sprints and when changing direction at speed.

Many drills can be performed with the mini bands looped around the ankles. From this position, you can perform exercises including “the running man” whereby the player runs on the spot, in a shuffling manner, keeping the bottom of the feet close to the floor. It's also possible to perform hip flexion, extension and abduction exercises in a standing or lying down (supine) position - which target and strengthen muscles that are important for speed, acceleration and injury prevention.

METIS Power Bands can also be used to carry out resisted sprints. With a partner holding one end of a band, the player can loop the band around his or her waist and sprint as the partner follows behind at a walking pace.

With an attachment point, or a partner, bands can also be used to perform resisted plyometrics . For example, 2 or 3 sets of a plyometric exercise such as vertical jumps can be performed with a band, and then another 2 or 3 sets can be performed without any resistance.

The use of the band in plyometric exercises and sprints, develops the strength and power in specific muscles involved in jumping and sprinting. The use of bands can also teach a football player to develop power and acceleration near the end of the movement - when the band is most taught.

Resisted runs with bandResisted runs with band

Resistance bands for golf

Resistance bands are popular with professional golf players as they can be used to target and strengthen the muscles incorporated in a golf swing. Unlike traditional free weights which use gravity to provide resistance, bands can provide elastic resistance from a range of angles, allowing users to build rotational strength and power efficiently.

Many competitive golf players will also travel with resistance bands because they can be used to perform a highly specific and targeted warm-up routine that can mitigate the risk of injury. Bands are not only excellent for warming up and activating muscles but they can also be used to strengthen the rotator cuff muscles in the shoulders - a common site of injury in many sports including golf.

For those golfer’s that work sitting down all day, resistance bands and exercises such as “rear delt flys” can be used to help maintain good posture. If a golfer is hunched over and has poor posture, then the mechanics involved in an efficient swing are extremely difficult to achieve. Using resistance bands can be an effective way to develop core strength and correct postural alignment.

It’s not all about injury prevention however, as bands can be used to develop power which can lead to increased club head speed. Golfers can use resistance bands to develop the muscles used in a swing without needing to leave their house or hotel room. Rotational exercises such as wood chops, external rotations and even band punches can help develop powerful rotational core muscles including the internal obliques and the lumbar multifidus muscle which helps stabilise the spine during rotational movements.

Our pulley system resistance bands vary in resistance, from 11lb to 44lb (5kg to 20kg). The great thing is that you can combine all of the bands together to produce over 100lbs (45kg) of resistance - so you can experience the benefits of an expensive weightlifting machine with one set of bands.

Resistance bands for tennis

Resistance bands are popular amongst tennis players because they can be used to closely replicate the movements and techniques used when playing. Thanks to the elastic resistance, tension can be added to movements from all different angles, enabling players and coaches to replicate serves, volleys, forehands and backhands.

Bands can be used with various anchor points and attachments to specifically replicate tennis techniques and strokes. Targeting and practising tennis-specific movement patterns is extremely important when it comes to improving performance. According to the SAID principle - "Specific Adaptations to Imposed Demands" - the only way to improve tennis performance, is to replicate the movements and fitness demands of the game during training and conditioning sessions. The best way therefore to develop a powerful forehand, for example, is to replicate the forehand movement as closely as possible in training.

Bands are great for targeting specific tennis-movement patterns but they can also be used to develop a solid foundation of whole-body power and strength. For example, “thrusters” are an explosive squat and press exercise that develops lower and upper body power and endurance.

Used by physiotherapists for decades, bands can also be used to mitigate the risk of injury. Resistance band exercises such as rear delt flys bent over rows, lateral walks and deadlifts can be used to correct hunched over posture and warm up the muscles in the glutes after hours of sitting.

Shoulders are particularly vulnerable to injury for tennis players. Resistance bands can be used to strengthen the rotator cuff muscles that hold and support the shoulder joint - which in turn reduces the risk of injuries including dislocations. External rotation, internal rotation and shoulder extension exercises are all important elements of a prehab and rehab programme for any serious tennis player that wants to mitigate the risk of shoulder injuries.

Inexpensive, fun and easy to transport, bands are an incredibly versatile tool that every tennis player should look to benefit from.

 

Rugby resistance bandRugby resistance band

Resistance bands for rugby

Anyone who has played or even watched rugby will no doubt testify that it is an extremely demanding sport, both physically and mentally. Modern rugby players require speed, power, strength, endurance and agility.

With players looking for every advantage possible, looped resistance bands are often combined with barbells and hex bars, to optimise the development of explosive strength. Bands are also renowned for helping strength-athletes break through plateaus when it comes to heavy presses, squats and deadlifts.

Bands are incredibly versatile and are also a common sight on the training ground as well as inside the gym. Bands are often attached or looped around players as they perform sprinting and lateral speed work drills. Bands can be used to perform resisted sprints as well as over-speed work.

Some strength and conditioning coaches are particularly innovative and imaginative when it comes to making the most of resistance bands and use a combination of barbells, kettlebells and bands to produce "unstable force" training protocols. For example, some coaches will hang kettlebells from the end of barbells, by attaching them with resistance bands. Although this is something that we wouldn’t recommend without the supervision of a professional fitness coach, it is said to enhance a player’s ability to generate force against an unstable load.

With speed and acceleration such a crucial element of rugby performance, smaller resistance bands are commonly used to perform footspeed drills and glute activate exercises. Whilst they are often combined with free weights such as barbells, bands used in isolation can also be a highly effective tool for developing strength and power - without putting undue strain and pressure on the joints. For example, bands can be used to perform power exercises such as thrusters and resisted jumps for explosive speed and jumping ability in the line-out. Bands can also be used as an integral part of a muscle-building or hypertrophy programme, with exercises such as bicep curls, shoulder presses and band-deadlifts fantastic for stimulating muscle growth.

CHOOSING A RESISTANCE BAND

There are several factors to consider when buying a resistance band. First it helps to know what your training and exercise goals are, where you’ll be using the bands and what exercises you’ll be doing.

You also need to think about your current physical capabilities to make sure the bands you purchase are suitable for you. Resistance bands come in different thicknesses and grades, according to how much resistance and tension they provide. It’s important not to overdo it initially so we recommend that you start with lighter resistance bands and work up to thicker and stronger bands as you build up your strength and power.

Beyond that it's important to make sure the bands you buy are made from a highly durable material such as TPE or heavy-duty latex, and we always recommend buying from a trusted brand such as METIS.

Which are the best resistance bands for you?

With various types of resistance band to choose from we've outlined the different options we stock, including key information that should help you decide which option/options are most suited to you and your requirements:

  • 6 resistance options ranging from 3kg-104kg
  • High quality latex rubber material
  • Incredibly versatile for a range of band exercises
  • Ideal for fitness, weightlifting or stretching routines
Triceps exercise with bandTriceps exercise with band
Glute bridges with bandGlute bridges with band
  • Set of 3 bands for light, medium & heavy resistance
  • Features long-lasting, non-slip cotton
  • Isolate & activate specific muscle groups
  • Perform exercises for legs, glutes & hips
  • 6 resistance options ranging from 3kg-104kg
  • High quality latex rubber material
  • Incredibly versatile for a range of band exercises
  • Ideal for fitness, weightlifting or stretching routines
Lateral Raise with BandLateral Raise with Band
Mini Resistance BandsMini Resistance Bands
  • Set of 4 TPE looped bands
  • 4 band thicknesses deliver different resistance levels
  • Ideal for warm up, & glute activation exercises
  • Bestselling option for first time band users

You should now have all of the information you need to make an informed decision on which resistance bands to buy! You should also have a clearer idea of how they can be used and the benefits they offer.

In addition to resistance bands we also stock a huge range of other gym products that caters for all requirements, budgets and exercise goals so if you're looking to buy gym equipment for a home or commercial gym we have you covered.

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The Sunday Hundred Award Logo
The Lloyds Bank British Business Excellence Award Logo
The Sunday Times BDO Profit Track 100 Award Logo
Great British Entrepreneur Awards 2022 Award Logo
Growth Index 2022 Award Logo