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> Resistance bands – exercises for runners and why it is worth using them

Resistance bands – exercises for runners and why it is worth using them

Publish date 15.03.2023

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Resistance bands – exercises for runners and why it is worth using them

Not only is running important in a runner’s life. To make your workouts fruitful, you should include complementary exercises that you can do at home. Of course, these can be basic exercises that everyone knows well, but it is worth diversifying them with resistance bands. 

In this article, you will learn not only about exercises with resistance bands but also what they are and what you will gain by including them in your training. Ok, so much for the introduction, now it’s time to move on to the important sections. Let’s get started!

What are resistance bands exercises for runners?

Training with resistance bands is an ideal way to strengthen your muscles. Of course, they are not essential, but they will make your training more efficient and fruitful. 

What will you gain by adding resistance bands to your training? 

  • strengthen your muscles and their strength, 
  • improve your fitness, 
  • help to increase the range of motion and maintain a correct figure, 
  • perform training to improve speed, thanks to the attachment of the appropriate resistance band to a stable point, 
  • introduce a new element to your training, so your body will not get used to training and the exercises will continue to bring the expected results, 
  • strengthening and stretching muscles reduce the risk of injury, 
  • maintain muscle balance, 
  • improve your speed, running technique, and endurance, 
  • stimulate your deep muscles, 
  • improve stabilization.

What are the benefits of resistance bands? 

  • are easy to store – you can put them anywhere, such as in your pocket, purse, or backpack. 
  • they are reusable – imagine how many workouts you can do by buying at least one resistant band.
  • you will do a full-body workout with it – today you want to stretch your arms and tomorrow your legs? A resistance band will help you with that. 
  • you will exercise with an upright body, even if you have a problem with it. 
  • you will match your workout – on the market, you will find many types of resistance bands, which have different resistance and circumference.

The most popular types of exercise bands

resistance bands – long, with high resistance, for training the whole body

mini bands – short, mostly used for arm training, light lower body training,

booty bands – short, wide, super-strong bands for sharp training of the buttocks and legs. Most often made of fabric.

exercise expanders – equipment with handles, to which several rubber bands are attached. You can put together a very high resistance on them

speed resistors – also a type of resistance rubber, but used for a different type of training – speed and endurance training in experienced runners

How to start training with resistance bands?

Now that you know the advantages and types of resistance bands you are almost ready to exercise. I write “almost” because you still need to know how to start exercising. This is important to make each workout enjoyable. If you approach it wrongly, you’ll get fed up after one workout. We don’t want that, so here are some tips on how you should start exercising with resistance bands.

What material to choose for an exercise band for a runner? 

For exercise, it is best to choose resistance bands made of the material. They are more durable than those made of plastic material. What’s more, they provide more comfort during training, as they do not curl or break – they will serve you for many workouts and you will not have to worry about breaking your equipment during exercise.

Which resistance band to start training with?

It is best to choose a resistance band that has the least resistance. All because your body needs to get used to the fact that the exercises are no longer as easy as before. 

What is the most important thing during workouts? 

When exercising with resistance bands, the most important thing is to feel muscle tension. Tense your body with each repetition. If you feel you’ve had enough, stop.

Where to exercise with resistance bands?

Everywhere. You can do it outside, on a mat, at the gym, and in your home. Find a room with enough space and get to work! With these exercises, you will strengthen your muscles, which will positively improve your running performance.

Ok, now you know how you should start exercising. However, what exercises will be the best for a runner? Check it out!

10 resistance bands exercise for runners 

1.Squats – classic exercise

Resistance band - squat

A standard exercise that everyone can do – although not everyone knows what a proper squat should look like. By performing squats you strongly engage your legs and glutes, which also get very involved when running.

How to perform a proper squat with a resistance band?

  • use a mini band to perform squats. It is best to locate it on your calves. 
  • put your arms forward – they should be straight.
  • extend your legs so that the band does not fall off and start slowly bending your knees – the deeper the squat the better. What’s more, when performing this exercise, don’t let your knees start to go down inward. 
  • do about 10-15 repetitions. In the squat position, hold for about 2-3 seconds, so that the exercise will bring results.

2.Monster walk 

Resistance band -  monster walk

Exercise that you can go to immediately after squats because the position is practically the same. It is an ideal way to strengthen the glutes and quadriceps of the thighs. 

How to perform a monster walk? Check it out! 

  • put the resistance band at the level just under your knees, and then stand with your feet apart. Your feet should be at the width of your hips. 
  • then do a half squat – knees slightly outward. 
  • tighten your glutes and abdominal muscles and take a step from side to side – just start walking like a crab. 
  • do 20 repetitions.

3.Hip abductor exercise

Resistance band - hip abductor

Want to strengthen your leg and buttock muscles? Try this! Adductors, abductors, and quadriceps work the most during this exercise. 

How does it make it effective? 

  • don’t do this exercise on a hard floor – lay out an exercise mat. 
  • lie on your side, and place the resistance band (mini-band) slightly below your knees. 
  • rest your body weight on the hand that touches the mat. 
  • then tighten your abdominal muscles and lift your leg – remember that the resistance band must tighten. 
  • what’s important? Don’t bend your knees during the exercise, and don’t relax your muscles when lowering your leg. 
  • perform the exercise about 15 times.

4.Kickback 

Resistance band - kickback

An ideal exercise to strengthen the glutes and the biceps muscle

How to perform this exercise?

  • again, use the mat. 
  • knees to the floor. 
  • support yourself with straight arms on the floor. 
  • place the resistance band just below your knees. 
  • straighten your left and right leg alternately – stay in this position for about 2-3 seconds.
  • repeat this exercise about 15 times for each leg.

5.Double-leg glute bridges 

Resistance band - double-leg glute bridges

Exercise that will help you strengthen, first of all, the buttocks. However, there is more to it than that. It will also allow for greater stability and strength of the spinal cord. 

How to perform this exercise? 

  • lie down on an exercise mat on your back. 
  • then place the resistant band just above your knees. 
  • bend your knees, and feet flat on the floor. 
  • tighten your abdominal and gluteal muscles and lift your hips. 
  • repeat this exercise about 15 times.

6.More mobility in the foot and ankle 

Resistance band - mobility foot

The runner mainly focuses on developing and strengthening their legs but forgets about the feet. Feet, too, should get proper training and stretching. This is important because they should have the strength to support all the weight, and the ankles should have enough mobility so that you do not get an injury. Here is one exercise that will help prevent this. 

How to do it? 

  • sit on a mat and extend your legs in front of you – they should be straight. 
  • put a resistant band on one foot – approximately in the middle of the foot. 
  • then slowly start pulling on the resistance band.
  • You should point your toes toward the resistance. Hold your foot in this position for about 2-3 seconds. 
  • Repeat about 15 times for each foot.

7. Standing leg abduction

Resistance band - standing leg abduction

This exercise engages the small and medium gluteal muscles and additionally teaches stability. With this exercise, you will also ensure better balance. 

How to do it? 

  • put the mini-band slightly below your knees or below your calves. 
  • extend your arms forward, in front of you – they should be straight.
  • then start tilting one leg back – it should be straight. 
  • repeat the exercise for both legs about 15 times. 

At the very beginning, it may be difficult for you to keep your balance. Therefore, hold on to a wall or a chair to do the exercise well. 

8. Deadlift

Resistance band - deadlift

You don’t necessarily have to do this exercise with a barbell at the gym – you can do it at home with the help of resistance bands. The deadlift engages the whole body and is one of the most effective exercises.

When performing this exercise, remember that you should feel the muscles you are working – gluteal muscles, quadriceps, trunk, and shoulders.

How to perform a deadlift?

  • you will need a long resistance band to perform this exercise. 
  • stand with both feet apart on the resistance band.
  • clench your buttocks, grab your extremities, and straighten up.
  • keep your back straight.
  • repeat this exercise about 12 times, holding the deadlift position for about 2-3 seconds.

9. Lying single-leg press 

The next exercise will be ideal for those who want to strengthen their quads, hamstrings, and glutes. It is a simple exercise. You will need a little longer exercise resistance band for this. 

How to perform the lying single-leg press? Let’s take a look.

  • lie on your back on a mat. 
  • then take an exercise resistance band and wrap it around your foot. Hold one end of the band in your left hand and the rugged end in your right hand. 
  • bend your leg at the knee and then stretch forward. It doesn’t have to be straight – a 45-degree angle is enough. 
  • then return to the initial position. 
  • repeat the exercise about 15 times for both legs.

10. Plank with leg lift

We have come to the last exercise on our list. I guess you see the word “plank” and already have in front of your eyes the torment and terror. Granted it is a difficult exercise and you need strength in your arms and torso, but it is worth doing this exercise. During these exercises abdominals, glutes, shoulders, back and hips are working.

How to do this exercise? 

  • put an exercise resistance band a little above your ankles and lie on your stomach. 
  • do a position as if you were doing a push-up, but lean on your forearms. 
  • lift your whole body upwards – only your forearms and toes remain near the ground. 
  • stay in this position for about 1 minute. 

I know, it can be difficult. That’s why when you feel you can’t handle it anymore, stop the exercise. Never do anything if you feel that you can’t anymore.

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