Theraband workout. Visit any dance studio and chances are that you will find more than one Theraband lying around. Not only are they great tools for rehabilitation, but they can also give you a fantastic total body workout. In addition, if you are a frequent traveler, this workout tool can be your best friend. It’s light and easy to pack.
Leg presses. Lie on your back wrapping the band around one foot, while holding the band in your hands. Leading with your heel, press your leg away from you. For an added ab workout, try this with both legs at the same time.
Seated rows. Sit upright on the floor if you can, or propped up on a block. With your legs stretched out in front of you, wrap the band around your feet. Elbows tucked in, pull your arms back. To add a triceps, press straighten your arms at the end of the movement. Remember to keep those shoulders down and your abdominals engaged.
Rotator cuff. I like doing this one standing with knees slightly bent. Stand on the band with one foot holding it with your opposite hand. Keeping your elbow bent at 90 degrees and close to your body, rotate your arm out as far as you can and slowly return to your starting position.
Ankle and foot strengthening. In an earlier post, we discussed how to walk in heels and one of the secrets are strong feet and ankles. In a seated position, wrap the band around your foot. With gentle tension on the band, point your toes toward the floor and slowly flex them toward the ceiling. You can also circle your ankles or gently move them from side to side (keeping constant tension on the band).
Hamstring stretches and leg circles. Lying on your back, place one foot in the band. Gently pull your leg up toward the ceiling until you feel a stretch and hold for 15 seconds. This is also a great time to loosen your hips with some easy leg circles. Just remember to stabilize your core by keeping your abs gently engaged.
There are several different resistance levels, so it’s wise to have several bands on hand. What might be easy for your legs may be near impossible to work with for you upper body. If you only have one, however, just hold the band in different spots. The shorter the band, the more resistance there is.
When you are working with a band, you can be creative and try different movements to help increase your muscle mass while stretching them out.
I’ve used Therabands widely when I was dancing, when I was running my Pilates studio and even when I was in physio. Over the years they have proved to be an integral part of my training regiment, allowing me to work my muscles when I specifically didn’t want the extra impact of weights. If you are looking for something you can do at home or something a little different, try incorporating a band into your workout several times a week and you’ll quickly see great results.
Have you ever used a Theraband? What are your favourite exercises?