A Full-Body Resistance Band Workout You Can Do Anywhere
Whether you're stuck at home, traveling, or heading outdoors for some fitness—resistance bands are a fantastic piece of workout equipment to elevate your bodyweight routine. The stretchy bands are great for building strength and muscle endurance all over your body—plus, they're easy to use and very versatile.
To put those resistance bands (and your body) to the test, try this workout from my signature Love Sweat Fitness 3:1 method. Each circuit features three strength exercises and one plyometric exercise—so you'll get great strength and a cardio workout, all rolled into one. Depending on how much time you have, either choose one of the circuits below, or do all three.
How to: Start with the resistance band around your thighs just above your knees. Place your feet wider than hip-distance apart, with your heels facing in and your toes pointed slightly out. Keep your bodyweight in your heels with your chest lifted and core tight. Sit your hips back and down as you lower into a "seated" position. Pushing into the band, bring your hips down in line with your knees. Push through your heels and squeeze your glutes to come back to standing. That's one rep. Complete 15.
How to: Start by holding the band in both hands overhead. Pull your shoulders back and down, tuck your pelvis, and engage your core. Exhale and pull down on the right side, driving your elbow down and squeezing your shoulder blades together. Inhale as you return to the starting position and do the same on the left. That's one rep. Complete 10.
How to: Begin in a side forearm plank with shoulders stacked over the elbow and resistance band around the thighs just about the knees. Engage your core and drive your upper knee toward your chest as you reach your arm and pull your elbow to meet the knee in the middle. That's one rep. Complete 30 on each side.
How to: Start in a sumo squat position with the band around your thighs and hands on the floor. Explode, jumping up with hands overhead, and land softly back into your squat. Move as quickly as possible. That's one rep. Complete 15.
How to: Come onto your side with your knees bent and the band around your thighs. Keep your ankles together as you press into the band to open your knees, working your abductors. Slowly close with control. That's one rep. Complete 16 on each side.
How to: Start standing, with the band in both hands and your feet hip-distance apart. Keep your bodyweight in your heels and a slight bend in your knees. With straight arms, bring your hands together in front of you. Start with your right hand facing away from your body and your left facing your thigh. Engage your right side and curl the band up toward your shoulder. Squeeze at the top and slowly lower with control. Repeat this same movement on the left and alternating sides. That's one rep. Complete 12.
How to: Start with the band in both hands and your feet hip-distance apart. Keep your bodyweight in your heels and hinge forward slightly. With straight arms, bring your hands together in front of you. Then with your palms facing each other, pull your right elbow back, keeping it close to your body. Squeeze the shoulder blades together, pause, and return to starting position. That's one rep. Complete 12 on each side.
How to: Start in a plank position with the band around your thighs, just above your knees. Drive your right knee toward your left elbow, then step back to starting. Repeat with your left knee to right elbow. That's one rep. Complete 20, moving from left to right as quickly as possible.
How to: Start with the band around the bottom of your feet, feet hip-distance apart. Bend into your knees and hinge forward with a flat back to gather the band in your hands. Engage your glutes as you lift to standing, squeezing your glutes and hamstrings at the top. That's one rep. Complete 15.
Note: You will not likely be able to return to full upright position with the band in hands. Keep a bend in your knees and remain slightly hinged at the top depending on the band you use.
How to: Start with your band in both hands and your feet hip-distance apart. Keep your bodyweight in your heels and hinge forward slightly. Place your left hand with the band onto your right hip. Drive the elbow of your right arm toward the sky; keep your right hand on your hip. Keep your upper arm stable as you press your band back and upward to straighten your arm. Bend to lower the band to your hip. That's one rep. Complete 12 on each side.
How to: Lie on your back with the band around your thighs and just above your knees. Bring your hands gently behind your head with your elbows out wide. Bend your knees to a 90-degree angle and engage your core. Lift your shoulders off the mat and extend your left leg out to hover, as you twist your right elbow to your left knee. Switch sides and repeat. That's one rep. Complete 20.
Plank to Squat
How to: Start in plank position with the band around your thighs and legs slightly wider than hip-width apart. Hop your feet toward your hands. When your feet reach your hands, bring your weight into your heels, and continue to press into the band. Lift your chest to lift into a squat position. Plank your hands back down, hop your feet back. That's one rep. Complete 12.
Katie Dunlop is a NCCPT-Certified Personal Trainer, group fitness instructor and entrepreneur based in Orange County, California. She is the creator of Love Sweat Fitness, a health and fitness community that inspires women around the world.