Prevailing wisdom suggests that we need equipment such as weight plates, barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, and individual gym machines for optimal training.
For the longest time, the typical gym has been the gold standard for physical development.
But how true is that? Do we need a fully-stocked gym to have productive workouts, or have we fallen for the hype?
Sure, the gym can be beneficial, but there are plenty of effective alternatives. One such choice is the resistance band.
Let’s take a look at why resistance bandsmight be more beneficial than weights.
If you wanted to build a solid home gym, you would easily have to invest $2,500-3,000. You would also need to have the space for the equipment.
Resistance bands, on the other hand, are compact and inexpensive. They barely take up any space, and you can get yourself, numerous solid resistance bands, for as little as $50.
Imagine that you have a dumbbell in one hand, and you want to curl it up. If you apply a lot of force at the start and curl it explosively, the dumbbell will gain momentum, and lifting it to the top position will be more comfortable.
This is momentum at play.
In other words, you can easily use momentum to reduce the tension on your muscles and thus lift heavier weights for more repetitions. As you can probably imagine, that’s not a very effective way of training.
Now, if you instead attach a band on something sturdy and do a bicep curl, you wouldn’t be able to gain momentum even if you try to curl it explosively. This is because the band offers what is known as linear variable resistance - the more you stretch it, the more tension it provides.
This allows for safer and more effective training that doesn’t allow the use of momentum that makes each repetition easier. What’s more, you can use bands for explosive training that will help you build power and explosiveness.
I’m sure we can all agree that the gym is fantastic. But, it carries one significant drawback:
We are bound to it. In other words, if we want to train, we need to be at that specific location for a given amount of time. This isn’t bad, but it hinders our freedom and flexibility. And, if you want to travel to a new place or go on vacation, you need to find a new gym for your workouts.
The great thing about resistance bands is that, so long as you have a few pairs, you can train virtually anywhere - at home, on the road, in a hotel room, in the park, at the beach, and anywhere else you can imagine.
This not only provides us with a lot of flexibility but also makes us more likely to stay consistent because the act of starting (which often is the most challenging part) is effortless.
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