Band together for stronger legs

My trainer once told me that the legs were one of the best tools to build legs. Please don’t underestimate your body weight when it comes to improving lower body strength. Squats and lunges are great bodyweight exercises, but you may need to challenge your muscles further. These four fantastic resistance band exercises can help you develop a stronger lower body.

Why use resistance bands to lower body strength

You can do these exercises with dumbbells and kettlebells. However, resistance bands may be the better choice. The bands are easy to use and lightweight. They can also be used for a wide variety of leg exercises. You can also adjust the resistance of bands by changing their tension. It isn’t easy to achieve this with hand weights, which can be too light or heavy.

What bands can you use to boost your leg exercises?

There are many types of resistance bands available. Use bands that are made of a single piece of stretchy material, such as TheraBand, with the ends tied to form a loop. Or, use a rubber band loop. Their thickness usually determines the color of the bands. Yellow is generally the thinnest, easiest-to-use color, followed by green, red, blue, and black. However, this can depend on the brand.

The four exercises can be done standing up while holding the chair back for balance. To complete a set, perform eight to twelve reps for each exercise on each leg. You can do up to two sets, with a one-minute rest between. Increase the resistance of the band by increasing its length or performing more repetitions (up to 20).

Want to get a complete body workout? Add the upper body exercise from my post about resistance bands.

Standing side leg raise (outer thighs, hips and thighs)

Start position: Loop the band around your calves. Standing behind a chair, with both feet together. For stability, hold on to the chair’s back with both or one hand.

Movement: Shift your weight onto your left leg. Maintain your right leg straight and lift it slowly to the side. Do not lean sideways as you lift your foot. To complete one repetition, return to the beginning position. Lower your leg slowly so that the band doesn’t jerk it back down.

Standing hamstring curl (backs of the thighs)

Start position: Loop the band around the right calf. Stand on the band and loop the other end of the band around your left foot. Hold the back of a chair lightly with both or one hand.

Movement: Bring your heel as high as you can against the resistance of the band toward your buttock. As you lift your leg, don’t arch your back or move your hips. Slowly lower the foot to the ground. This is one repetition.

Hip extension (buttocks, thighs, and backs)

Start position: Wrap the loop around your calves. Standing behind a chair, with both feet together. With one or both of your hands, hold the back of the seat.

Movement: Shift weight to your left foot. Slowly lift your right leg behind you against the resistance of the band. Lift it until your foot is six to twelve inches above the floor. As you lift your leg, don’t arch your back or move your hips. Stabilize the leg by tightening the buttock. To finish one repetition, return to the starting position.

Soccer Kick (Inner Thighs)

Position to start: Wrap the loop around a low-lying anchor point, like the leg of heavy furniture such as a couch. Place your left foot in the loop and stand so that the anchor point is on your left. Standing straight up next to a seat with your feet close together, stand in front of the chair. One hand should be used to hold the chair’s back.

Movement: Tighten your abdominal muscles. As if you were kicking a ball with your inside foot, lift your left leg and sweep it diagonally across the band. Hold your foot for a few seconds, and then slowly return it to the left. Maintain a neutral posture and keep your hips level.