Sometimes it can feel like an exercise is so far from your current fitness level that there’s no way to even try to practice it.
This is often the case with a lot of the cool calisthenics moves you see super advanced athletes doing. The exercises are just so dang hard you have no idea how you’d even start, so you don’t even try (I’ve been there!).
But that’s why we’re such huge fans of using bands to help work up to doing many really cool—but really hard—exercises.
Here’s why using bands to help you progress is so awesome:
- The elasticity of bands helps to make the exercise easier to perform, so you can actually feel the entire movement of the exercise you want to be doing.
- Even though using bands this way makes exercises easier, it will still help you build up a ton of strength. The stronger you get, the lighter the band you’ll need to use.
- Using bands to work up to cool exercises will give you an incredible sense of confidence and make you feel like with hard work and consistency, someday you’ll actually be able to do the exercise without a band. In our experience, no other way of training has this same powerful effect.
So to get you started working with bands, we’ve put together five of our favorite exercises to practice with bands. For these exercises, you can use any type of bands you have available, but if you don’t have any just yet, we really love Rubberbanditz bands.
Here are five superhuman calisthenics moves you can practice with bands:
How to do them: Fold a band once around a pull up bar. Grip the bar with your hands facing away from you, then put your feet into both loops. Straighten your arms and legs, lean back and push your hips up until your body is parallel to the ground.
Hold, then return to the starting position.
How to do them: Loop a band over a pull up bar and place your feet into the band. Grip the bar with your hands facing away from you, then explosively pull yourself up above the bar as far as you can. Try and get your chest over the bar.
How to do them: Lay down flat as you grip a pull up bar, underside of a bench, or other sturdy object with both hands. Your arms should be bent. Lift your legs up into a candlestick position, keeping your core tight and your body as straight as possible.
Slowly lower your feet with control as far as you can. Your goal should be to get them nearly parallel to the ground while still on your shoulders. Hold, then return to the starting position.
Handstand Push Ups
How to do them: Take two bands and fold the heavier one around a pull up bar. Fold the lighter band through the heavier band, then insert one of your arms in each loop. Put your hands on the ground then tuck or kick up into a handstand. Tighten your core, then lower your forehead down as far as you can towards the ground before pushing back up.
Explosive Push ups
How to do them: Loop a band onto a pull up bar, then get into a push up position with the band under your chest or stomach. Push up as explosively as you can.
You can experiment with different variations of these including cool moves like clapping push ups and superman push ups.
Work hard, and have fun with your training!