By Sam Cortes, Communications Coordinator
Adding a mini band to your workout can help strengthen your stabilizer muscles, which are important muscles for good posture and balance. They work to “stabilize” the body and help protect joints, too.
How does this small but effective piece of equipment do this? By adding resistance to the muscles around the band.
Target Your Glutes And Core
Try these five mini band exercises that activate your three glute muscles (gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus) and your core.
Pro tip: Some of these mini band exercises offer unilateral exercises to work each leg separately. Perform each exercise for a total of 10 reps for 3 sets to feel the burn in your lower legs and glutes. Don’t forget to switch legs and perform 10 reps per leg!
1. Banded Squats
Place the mini band above your knees for added resistance when lowering into the squat position.
Keep in mind to resist the urge of your knees caving in as the mini-band will pull them in. This will strengthen your abductor muscles located on the outer part of your legs.
2. Single Leg Banded Pulls
Place the mini band around the middle of one foot. Holding the band in your opposite hand, pull the band so it stretches and you’re standing nice and tall.
Hinging at the hips, bring yourself forward with your hand holding the mini band towards your foot. In a controlled motion, bring yourself back up pulling the band.
Not only is it working on your balance, the mini band is adding more work to our glutes, too.
Or, try this modified version:
3. Laying Steps
Laying on your back and placing the mini band around the middle of both your feet, bring your knees up to a 90-degree angle over your hips.
Extend one leg at a time. Press against the mini band and tap your heel to the floor, then bring it back to start position. Make sure to switch legs, completing a total of 20 reps (10 per side). This helps strengthen those large hamstring muscles on the back of your legs.
Moving into a table top position, with your wrists under shoulders and your knees under your hips. Keep the mini band above your knees. Kick one leg up into the air, keeping your knees at a 90-degree angle throughout the movement. Lower back to starting. Continue for 10 reps and switch sides.
Not only are you stabilizing your core in this position, but you’re also adding in the work of the hamstrings.
5. Fire Hydrants
Stay in the same position as the kickbacks (mini band above the knees). Lift your leg to the side, pressing against the resistance of the band and lowering your leg back to start position for 10 reps, switching to the opposite leg for another 10 reps.
This exercise helps strengthen the glutes and abductors.
Questions? Let us know! Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org, 204-925-5931, or come visit us at Member Services next time you’re at the gym.