In an online shopping frenzy a few weeks ago, I convinced myself that I needed resistance bands in order to complete my home-gym experience. I already had a set of hand weights, an exercise mat, and a drawer full of training-ready sports bras like the UA Infinity Mid Heather Sports Bra ($40), so why wouldn't a set of bands complete my at-home fitness journey?
However, when my bands arrived, I quickly realized I had no clue what I was doing. After a few weeks of letting my recent purchase gather dust, I decided to hit up ACE-certified personal trainer and founder of Keebs Fitness Kelly Borowiec to give me some pointers. She gave me four leg-targeting moves that may seem run of the mill but will totally make your muscles shake.
Pulsing Squat: Works Quadriceps, Glutes, and Hamstrings
- Step near the middle of your resistance band with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees behind your toes, and your chest lifted.
- Raise the handles of the bands up to the height of your shoulders.
- Sit back into a squat position.
- Stay low and pulse out your legs for 10 seconds.
- Return to standing and repeat three to four times.
Leg Raise: Works Quadriceps
- Tie the handles of your bands into a knot to create a loop (or use a loop band alternatively).
- Lie down on the floor and place the loop just above your ankles.
- Raise one leg up while keeping it straight, working against the resistance of the band.
- Use your other leg to anchor down the band.
- Perform 10-15 reps on each leg for three to four sets.
Outer Thigh Press: Works Thighs and Glutes
- Lie on your back with your legs in the air, slightly wider than your hips.
- Loop the band around the arch of your feet and keep the handles in your hands.
- Press both legs out to the sides and then bring them back in. Your legs will make a 'V' shape during this movement.
- Perform 10-15 reps for three to four sets.
- Trainer tip: When performing this exercise, focus on engaging your abdominals and bringing your hands close to the ground for more resistance.
Stationary Lunge: Works Quadriceps, Glutes, and Hamstrings
- Step on the middle of your band with one foot.
- Bring the handles up to the height of your shoulders.
- Step back with your opposite leg into a lunge position. Maintain a 90-degree angle in your front knee and make sure your knee doesn't go over your toes, while keeping your back straight.
- Perform 10-15 standing lunges with the same leg in front, then switch sides. Repeat for three to four sets.