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  • Writer's pictureHannah Foster-Middleton


Resistance bands are ideal for strengthening muscles and bones, without requiring whole-body movement. They also provide a solution for conditioning the body against fractures, fall risks, and degenerative injuries. Learn why a physiotherapist may recommend the use of resistance bands.

What Are Resistance Bands?

Resistance bands are made of elastic rubber and help facilitate various strength training exercises. They are a lighter-weight, more convenient alternative to free weights and machines, allowing you to take your exercise routine wherever you go.

Studies have found that resistance bands deliver a workout similar to traditional weight training. When using resistance bands, you’ll notice:

·         They come in varying resistance levels. As your recovery progresses, you can incorporate greater resistance. Increased resistance also targets more muscles, including the stabilizer muscles in your knees, legs, and hips.

·         Can be ideal for mobility issues. As your range of motion and flexibility return, you can add greater resistance and tension, without having to support extra weight.

·         The level of resistance is not absolute. Compared to lifting dumbbells of a fixed weight, resistance increases the more that you stretch a band.



Types of Resistance Bands

During physiotherapy, your band type and degree of resistance will be relative to your condition. As you gain more strength and mobility, you’ll progress to different levels of resistance bands.

It’s important to understand that too much resistance can place additional strain on your joints. Always follow your therapist’s recommendation on which bands to use throughout your recovery.

Common types of resistance bands include:

·         Therapy Bands: A single strip of material that measures about three to four feet long. Pulling the band farther results in greater resistance. Different colors can also indicate varying degrees of resistance.

·         Loop Bands: A circular shape, ideal for working the lower extremities. They can also be used for resistance training involving arms.

·         Figure-Eight Bands: A double-loop design with handles at each end. These are also ideal for lower-body exercises.

Benefits of Resistance Bands

For your recovery and long-term strength and conditioning, resistance bands offer many benefits, including:

·         You can do your routine from anywhere, due to their lighter weight and portability.

·         Based on positioning, you can work the whole body. In addition to strength, flexibility, and joint mobility, this can help enhance your core strength, posture, and circulation.

·         You can perform your routine in a weight-bearing position, sitting or lying down.

·         Resistance can be progressive, allowing you to build up strength over time. Multiple bands allow for a broader spectrum of resistance.

·         Compared to other strength training equipment, resistance bands are fairly affordable.

·         The lack of weight may help you ease back into activity following an injury.

·         If you’re sore one day, you may be able to continue muscle training and conditioning with decreased resistance.


Whether you’re looking for more targeted strength and conditioning or physiotherapy for injury recovery these are a great option for all levels.


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