5 Full-Body Resistance Band Moves from Trainer Ashley Joi That Will Have You Shaking

Level up your living room workouts with this cheap, portable, and versatile piece of equipment.

5 Full Body Resistance Band Moves from Trainer Ashley Joi
Photo: Courtesy/ Ashley Joi

Whether you've mastered the at-home workout or are just getting into a fitness routine in the new year, there's one key piece of equipment that can help level up your living room workout game: the mighty resistance band. It'll help you strengthen all the muscles, from your core to your arms, legs, and glutes, and you can also fit in your sock drawer. Did we mention they're cheap, too?

"Resistance bands can be used by all fitness levels to add versatility to your workouts," says Ashley Joi, CPT, a Sweat Factor trainer. "You're able to build strength like weightlifting without actual heavy weights to carry around," she adds.

While the portability is a definite plus, the point of exercising with resistance bands is working on the stabilizing muscles, which support larger muscle groups (and can also help your posture and reduce the risk of injury), Joi says. Anyone can work with resistance bands to up their strength in a low-impact way, in fact, she adds that it's a super safe and comfortable prenatal workout. Plus, you're really getting a full-body muscle toning workout when you're using the bands. "You can target just about every muscle group in your body with resistance bands. You'll never underestimate the power or a resistance band when the next day you wake up feeling that soreness in your muscles," says Joi.

How it works: Aim to do this entire sequence 3 times through for a 15-minute workout. For each resistance band exercise, work for 45 seconds and allow yourself a 15-second rest period. You can take a 1-minute break between each full round, too.

If you want to add some cardio moves in at the end of each round to get your heart pumping, try some mountain climbers, jumping jacks, high knees, bodyweight squats, or butt kicks, Joi says.

You will need: A mat or towel if you prefer to work on that, a chair, and loop resistance bands of any color, in varying resistances. For your larger muscle groups, such as legs, glutes, quads, and hamstrings, Joi recommends the medium-heavy bands. You might choose light-medium bands for your biceps and triceps, she says, but ultimately it's up to your comfort level and tension preference.

1. Leg Curl

This move targets the hamstrings, and the core muscles too.

Courtesy/ Ashley Joi
  1. Sit at the edge of a chair and brace your core muscles. With a medium to heavy resistance band around your mid-shin, bring your feet out flat on the floor, with your knees wider than a 90 degree angle.
  2. Squeeze your hamstring and bring your heel back. Tap your heel on the leg of the chair or the ball of your foot on the ground. Repeat on the other leg and continue to repeat for 45 seconds.

2. Out-in Taps

This targets the abductors and adductors, two groups of muscles that surround your hip joint.

Courtesy/ Ashley Joi
  1. While sitting at the edge of a chair, brace your core muscles and put a medium to heavy resistance band around your mid-shin. Feel free to place your hands on the side of the chair for more support, or place them straight overhead for a challenge to engage your core more. Start with your feet flat on the ground close together.
  2. Step one foot outside your mat, hold for 1 to 3 seconds, and bring it back to center.
  3. Step the other foot outside the mat, hold for 1 to 3 seconds, and bring it back to center. Continue for 45 seconds, then rest.

3. Leg Extension

This move targets primarily your quad muscles.

Courtesy/ Ashley Joi
  1. First, sit at the edge of a chair and engage your core. Place a medium to heavy resistance band around your mid shin and sit with your feet hip-width apart.
  2. Flex your quad before extending your leg straight for a full leg extension. Hold at the top for 1 to 3 seconds. If any knee pain occurs, change the band to something lighter and reduce the resistance. Repeat on the other leg and continue to repeat for 45 seconds.

4. Triceps Kick Back

This move targets the tricep muscles in the back of your arms, and you can do it seated or standing.

Courtesy/ Ashley Joi
  1. Grab a light to medium resistance band, and grip both ends of the band. Stack each hand and add tension by pushing up and down at the same time.
  2. Take your bottom hand and extend from the elbow, until the bottom arm is completely straight. Hold for 1 to 2 seconds, then return to the starting position. Repeat on the other arm and continue to repeat for 45 seconds.

5. Bicep Curls

This is another move that targets the arm muscles, specifically the biceps, and can be done seated or standing.

Courtesy/ Ashley Joi
  1. Grab a light to heavy resistance band, and engage your core. Grip both ends of the band, adding tension by bringing your hands just outside the width of your body, or until you feel the band nice and firm. You should also engage your back by bringing your shoulder blades together before curling the band.
  2. Curl the band up by bringing your palm that's facing up toward your shoulder, like you would with a bicep curl using a dumbbell. Hold at the top for 1 to 3 seconds, and slowly lower down to the starting position. Repeat on both arms for 45 seconds.

HomeBODIES is our new recurring column bringing you beginner-friendly workouts you can do from the comfort of home.

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