Resistance bands are one of the most versatile pieces of fitness equipment you can own and use. They are affordable, portable, great for traveling with, and can be used with other strength equipment such as dumbbells and barbells for extra tension. Believe it or not, you can still get a great full-body workout in with just a pair of resistance bands—all you need to do is pick the right exercises.
If resistance bands are all you have on hand or you're not sure what to do for a full-body workout, remember that you want to emphasize mostly compound movements, which involve more than one muscle group. This helps you recruit more muscle fibers and can burn more calories than just regular isolation exercises.
Here's a full-body workout you can do basically anywhere with just resistance bands. Perform 3 to 4 sets of the following exercises back-to-back with no rest, or do them one at a time. For more, check out The #1 Way To Tone Your Body After Pregnancy, Trainer Says.
Start by stepping on a resistance band with your feet shoulder-width apart while holding the resistance band at shoulder height with both hands. Squat down by sitting back onto your heels and hips until they're parallel to the ground. Stand back up, and use the momentum to press the band up. Lower the band back to shoulder height before performing another rep. Do 3 sets of 10 reps.
Related: Sign up for our newsletter for the latest Mind + Body news!
Take the resistance band, and wrap it around a sturdy surface, such as a beam or a pole. Grip the band, and take a couple of steps back to get some tension on it. Keeping your core tight, drive your elbows back, squeezing your shoulder blades together to finish. Straighten your arms fully to get the full stretch before performing another rep. Do 3 sets of 15 reps.
Band Split Squats
Start by standing on the resistance band with one foot on top while holding it in both hands at chest height. Place your other foot behind you with your toes firmly planted. Keeping your chest tall and your core tight, lower yourself until your back knee touches the ground. Drive through the heel of the front leg to come back up. Perform all reps on one leg before switching to the other. Do 3 sets of 12 reps for each leg.
Band Reverse Fly
Start by wrapping the resistance band around a stable beam/bar. Keeping your arms completely straight, pull them back towards you, flexing the back of your shoulders at the end of the movement. Do 3 sets of 15 reps.
Step on a resistance band, and grab both handles. Keeping your chest tall and core tight, curl the handles toward you. Squeeze your biceps hard at the top, then resist all the way down until your arms are fully extended before performing another rep. Do 3 sets of 15 reps.
And that's it! A super-versatile workout you can do anywhere by simply using resistance bands. For more, check out The "Simple" Exercise Rebel Wilson Did to Lose 75 Pounds.