9 Most Effective Resistance-Band Exercises to Banish Love Handles
Love handles, those stubborn pockets of fat around the waist, are a source of frustration for many of my clients. While spot reduction is not a realistic approach to losing excess body fat, targeted exercises with resistance bands can help tone and strengthen the muscles in that area. Combining exercises that engage this part of the body with a calorie deficit and protein-rich diet can quickly shrink love handles. That's why I've rounded up nine of the absolute best resistance band exercises for love handles that will address this stubborn area.
By incorporating these resistance band exercises into your fitness routine, you can work toward a slimmer and more defined waistline. Remember to perform them consistently and combine them with a nutritious, well-balanced diet to see the best results in your journey to a toned, tighter waist. Keep reading to learn all about the best resistance band exercises for love handles. And for more resistance band moves, check out the 10 Best Resistance Band Exercises for a Slimmer Stomach.
Side Leg Raises
Side leg raises with a resistance band target the oblique muscles, helping to trim and tone the sides of your waist.
Attach one end of the resistance band to a sturdy anchor or door handle. Stand with your right side facing the anchor, and loop the other end of the band around your left ankle. Balance on your right leg, and slowly raise your left leg to the side, keeping it straight. Lower your leg back down. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Standing twists with a resistance band engage the obliques and help strengthen the core, reducing the appearance of love handles.
Step on the middle of the resistance band with both feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the band with both hands at chest height. Rotate your torso to the right, then to the left, keeping your feet in place. Ensure your movements are controlled, and engage your core throughout the exercise. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Seated Russian Twists
Seated Russian twists with a resistance band work the oblique muscles and enhance core stability.
Sit on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat. Hold the resistance band with both hands in front of you. Lean back slightly, and lift your feet off the ground, keeping your knees bent. Rotate your torso to the right, and touch the band to the floor next to your hip, then repeat on the left side. Complete three sets of 15 reps.
Standing Wood Chop
Standing wood choppers simulate the motion of chopping wood, targeting the obliques and strengthening the entire core.
Secure the resistance band to a high anchor point. Stand with your side to the anchor, and hold the band with both hands. Start with your hands near your hip, and then extend them diagonally upward across your body. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Bicycle crunches with a resistance band are a dynamic exercise that engages the entire core, including the obliques.
Lie on your back with the resistance band wrapped around your thighs. Lift your head and shoulders off the ground, and bring your right knee toward your chest while extending your left leg. Twist your torso to the right, bringing your left elbow toward your right knee. Alternate sides in a pedaling motion, maintaining a smooth and controlled pace. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Standing Side Crunches
Standing side crunches with a resistance band effectively target the oblique muscles.
Step on the resistance band with your left foot, holding the other end with your left hand. Place your right hand behind your head. Bend your torso to the left side. Return to the starting position, then switch sides. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Plank with Side Leg Lifts
This variation of the plank exercise with resistance bands adds an extra challenge to your oblique muscles.
Begin in a forearm plank position with the resistance band wrapped around your ankles. Lift your right leg as high as you can while keeping your hips stable. Lower your right leg, and repeat on the left side. Maintain a strong plank position throughout the exercise. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Side Plank with Band Pull
This exercise combines a side plank with a resistance band pull, engaging the obliques and improving core stability.
Lie on your right side, and support your upper body on your right elbow and forearm. Secure the resistance band to an anchor point below your ankles. Raise your hips to form a straight line from your head to your heels. Pull the band toward your hips, engaging your obliques. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.
Oblique Band Walks
This list of resistance band-exercises for love handles wraps up with the oblique band walk. Oblique band walks are a lateral movement exercise that strengthens the obliques and enhances overall core stability.
Step on the resistance band with both feet, shoulder-width apart. Cross the band over your chest, and hold it in your hands. Take small steps to the right while maintaining tension on the band. After reaching your desired distance, return to the starting position. You can also do this exercise with a loop resistance band around your ankles. Complete three sets of 15 reps on each side.