Below are a few examples of exercises that you will find in the user manual. As you can see we do not leave anything to chance. Each exercise explains exercise set up, starting position and movement. All of the exercises were designed using proper biomechanics which means that they are easy on the joints but tough on the muscles.
Remember that with exercise you always want to start out slow and then progress gradually. I have seen many people over do it at the beginning and then quit because they associate exercise with over exertion. The exercises demonstrated on this page are some basic exercises that will help to strengthen the large muscle groups in your body.
Legs – This is the largest muscle group in your body. The legs are so important for every aspect of your life: walking, bending, sitting and standing. The following leg exercise may make your life a lot easier. It is the squat and here is how you perform it with exercise bands.
1. Stand on elastic with feet straight ahead and hips width apart
2. Grip a handle in each hand and pull up until forearms are perpendicular to floor and hands are even with chin or set bar on the top of the shoulders
3. Keep back straight, head straight and chest up.
4. Lower your body with the same motion as sitting in a chair until thigh is almost parallel with the floor
1. Raise your body until your leg is almost straight
2. Slowly return to starting position REPEAT
Extra Tips: If you are not strong enough to perform this exercise with the exercise bands (and many of you aren’t) do chair squats instead. For chair squats just sit down lightly in a chair and then stand up again. See how many you can do it in a row and try to beat that number every time. I usually hold my clients hands while they are performing their chair squats so that they can help themselves up if they need it. So, finding a partner to help you would be ideal.
Back – The back is the second largest muscle group and is crucial for the following movements: lifting, pulling and bending. We are going to start with an exercise that works the large muscle the Lattisimus Dorsi “latts”. It is called the bent over one arm row and it is very effective.
1. While keeping back straight and chest up, bend your knees and waist
2. Grip the handle pull arm tight into body
1. While keeping forearm perpendicular to the floor, raise arm and shorten the back muscles (or in this case the latts) until hand is next to hip
2. Slowly return arm to starting position REPEAT
Extra Tips: This exercise for the back is a little more awkward than the others but still a good one. It is important that you try to keep your back flat instead of round during the movement. If you have problems creating a flat back, stick out your butt and arch your back – that should help. Also remember hand gripping lightly and pull through elbow
Chest – Many people equate a great physique with a great chest. But for our purposes it is one of the largest muscle groups and is responsible for movements like closing doors or pushing. Our chest exercise is the resisted pushup, feels like bench press. The reason that I chose this exercise is because there are many ways to perform it – even without the elastics for people of all strengths.
1. Wrap the elastic(s) around your body and place hands over the elastic(s) a few inches inside the clips with the elastics coming out the bottom of your palm
2. Fingers pointed straight, thumb touching bottom of chest
3. Keep your back straight, head straight and legs straight
1. Raise body and shorten chest muscles until arms are almost straight
2. Slowly return body to starting position
Extra Tips: If the resisted pushup is too difficult, try is without the elastic. If that is too difficult try the pushup with bent legs resting on your knees. If that is too difficult try wall pushups. Stand a foot or two away from a wall, put your hands on the wall and perform your pushups that way.
Shoulders – The shoulders are so important for most of your arm rotation and mobility. They are responsible for lifting your arms in front, to the side, back and over your head. Since we worked the front of the shoulder with pushups let’s work the side of the shoulder with lateral raise.
1. Stand on elastic(s), feet hips width apart
2. Grip handles and place hands on sides of thighs with palms facing side of leg
3. Bend legs slightly and keep your back straight, head straight and stomach tight
1. While keeping arms slightly bent and rotated inward raise the arms and shorten the middle shoulder muscles until the upper arm is parallel with the floor
2. Slowly return arms to starting position REPEAT
Extra Tips: It is very important that you perform this exercise correctly. During the movement try to keep your elbows higher than your hands. A good tip to help you with this action is to pretend like you are pouring out a quart of milk in each hand as your upper arm becomes parallel with the floor. If you are still having trouble, you can try keeping your arms straight – so no bend in the elbow.
Triceps – This muscle makes up two thirds of your arm and is located on the back of the arm. It is responsible for straightening the arm and is used by the body to push. Our exercise here is the standing triceps extension.
1. Stand on one end of the elastic(s) with the handle in between your legs
2. While gripping the other handle, raise your hand until it is behind your head and your upper arm is perpendicular to floor
3. Keep abs Tight, back tight
1. Raise your hand straight above your head and shorten the muscles until your elbow is almost totally straight
2. Slowly return hand to starting position REPEAT
Extra Tips: Try to keep the upper arm perpendicular to the floor instead of out to the side
Biceps – This muscle is the other third of your arm and it is located on the front of the arm. Also known as the beach muscle, the biceps are responsible for bending your arm for tasks like grabbing or pulling. Our biceps exercise is a classic: standing Biceps curl
1. Start the exercise by standing feet hips width apart
2. Grip a handle on each side and hold arms slightly bent at sides with palms facing forward
3. Keep your legs slightly bent, back straight, head straight, shoulders back and stomach tight
1. With elbows stationary at sides bend (curl) arm and shorten the muscles until forearm is just higher than parallel with floor
2. Slowly return arm to starting position REPEAT
Extra tips: This is a classic arm exercise. It is definitely effective. Try to make sure that you keep your body stable without rocking. Also, grip the bar or handles where it is naturally comfortable.