5 Easy Resistance Band Exercises to Build Muscle and Strength

The general school of thought is that if you want to build muscle and strength, you need to use a lot of weight like that available when using dumbbells, barbells or weight machines. The truth is that you can get just as good of a workout and build muscle and strength using resistance and your own body. Not only does this mean that you don’t have to spend a lot of money by joining your local gym or invest in expensive equipment that may gather dust later on, but you can also do these exercises just about anywhere, including at work or in your home.

For these five exercises, all you need is a quality resistance band. The style doesn’t matter, so those with loped tubing on the ends will work just as well as ones that come with handles at either end. You may even want to invest in a couple of different resistance bands, with one having a little more give for when you are just starting out and another one that requires a little more effort to stretch.

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#1 – Squat to Press

Stand on the center of the band with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding the handles in each hand. Bend your knees and hinge through your hips to move into a deep squat. Raise up and turn your palms away from your body as you extend your arms overhead. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement.

Squat to Press

Start with one set of 5 repetitions. The resistance is light.


#2 – Reverse Lunge to Curl

Begin in an upright standing position. Take one big step back with one leg, and step on the center of the tubing with your front foot. Hold the handles of the tubing in each hand. Lower your back knee to the ground. As you raise up, curl your arms to bring your hands to your shoulders. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement on the opposite side.

Reverse Lunge to a Curl

Start with one set of 5 repetitions on each side. The resistance is light.


#3 – Row to Tricep Extension

Stand on the center of the resistant tubing with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding a handle in each hand. Bend your knees slightly and hinge through your hips. Tighten your core, and then pull your arms back in a rowing motion, bringing the tubing handles to chest-height. Lower your arms back down, and then extend your arms straight back to slightly past your hips for the tricep extension. Return to the starting position and repeat the sequence of movements.

Row to Tricep Extension

Start with one set of 5 repetitions. The resistance is light.


#4 – Two-way Tubing Exercise

Begin in an upright standing position with your feet shoulder-width apart. Anchor one end of the tubing under your feet and hold the handle of the other end in one hand. Keeping your arm straight, extend your arm out to the side. Lower your arm down and extend your arm out front. Return to the starting position and repeat the sequence of movements on the opposite side.

Two-way Tubing Exercise

Start with one set of 5 repetitions on each side. The resistance is light.


#5 – Side Lunge to Woodchop

Stand with your feet wider than shoulder-width apart. Step onto the center of the tubing with one foot and hold the handles in both hands. Bend your knee to lower yourself into a side lunge position. Tighten your core, and then pull the bands up over your opposite shoulder. Return to the starting position and repeat the movement on the opposite side.

Side Lunge to Woodchop

Start with one set of 5 repetitions on each side. The resistance is light.

 To make these exercises more intense, you can add more sets or repetitions. You can also use stringer resistance bands. No matter where you are ―even when you are traveling ― you can do any one of these five exercises, or all of them, and increase your strength and muscle tone without digging too deep into your wallet.