Resistance bands are excellent for training your back muscles without gym equipment. I love doing resistance band exercises for home workouts because you can take strength training up a notch while keeping the moves low impact and reducing the risk of injury. Back muscles are some of the largest and most important in our bodies. Strengthening your back should be done regularly for good health and injury prevention. Doing these 5 exercises will also elongate our spines, making us stand straighter and look taller.
1. Seated Low Rows– Sit on the ground with your legs slightly bent and your feet flexed. Wrap the resistance band around the arches of your feet and hold onto either end with each hand. The closer to the middle of the band you grab, the more resistance you will feel. Sit up tall with the arms reaching forward. There should be no slack in the band in your starting position. Hold on tight as you pull your elbows back for a low row. Squeeze the shoulder blades together and slowly release the arms forward without letting your shoulders round. Do two sets of 15.
2. Shoulder Rolls– Sit up tall with your knees slightly bent and the heels digging into the floor. Hold onto each end of the band as it wraps around your upper back. Elbows are bent into your sides. Make sure you’re holding onto the band with your palms up so the ends of the band are hanging between your thumbs and index fingers. Reach the arms forward holding onto the band as it stretches. Keep the chest elevated and spine as straight as possible. Circle your shoulders forward, up, and back down. Do two sets of 10 rolls.
3. Serve a Platter– Sit up tall with your legs straight in front of you. If you have a hard time sitting up and over your hips in this position, you may keep a slight bend in your knees. Hold onto each end of the band with it wrapped around your upper back. Elbows are bent into your sides. Hold onto the band with your palms up so the ends of the band are hanging between your thumbs and index fingers. Reach the arms forward like you are serving a platter. Do not allow your back or shoulders to round. Keep the chest elevated and spine as straight as possible. Stay in this posture as you lean a few inches forward and then back with the arms stretched out. Go forward and back 5 times before bending the elbows back in. That is one rep. Do 10 reps.
4. Spine Stretch Forward– Sit up tall with your legs slightly wider than hip distance apart. Your arms are reaching forward at shoulder height with the band taut in between your hands. Flex your feet so that your knees stay facing the ceiling. Drop your head, round your spine, and use your abs to reach your torso forward. Keep the shoulders down, away from your ears. Once you are as far forward as you can go, straighten your back without letting your body rise all the way back up. Bring the arms by your ears as you lengthen the spine. Hold this position and pulse the arms back behind your ears five times. Bring the arms back in front of the shoulders and round the spine to roll up one vertebra at a time to your beginning position. Do the entire set three to five times.
5. Airplane-Lie face down holding onto each end of the band while it stretches across your upper back. Your arms will be straight out to the sides in a “T” position. Squeeze your butt, press your hips into the ground and pull your abs in as you lift the torso off the ground. Slowly rotate your upper body to the right, allowing your left arm to dip down and then to the left, allowing your right arm to dip down. Come back to center and lower the body back down. That is one rep. Repeat starting with the other side first and continue to switch each rep. Do 2 sets of 5.
We could all benefit from standing a little straighter. What’s your favorite exercise for better posture?
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Video: Crystal Chin