Tip: 14 Band Exercises for Bigger Lifts

Prevent injuries, perform better athletically, and smash some PRs by adding a few of these moves to your next workout.


Doing high-volume resistance band work has many advantages for lifters of all levels. One of the benefits? It'll directly help strengthen connective tissue, preventing potential soft-tissue injuries. That's one reason why it's a staple at Westside Barbell.

Another benefit is greater storage of kinetic energy via the series elastic component (SEC). During the eccentric or lowering phase of a lift, the SEC acts as a spring, which correlates to higher reversible strength (ability to go from eccentric to concentric contractions). As a result, it improves the explosive strength capability of an athlete.

Additionally, these movements can be done for high amounts of work with no risk of injury or delayed onset muscle soreness, which is an added bonus if you're wanting to bump up the volume but not take away from your main workouts.

Band work can also help improve your mind-muscle connection, increase hypertrophic adaptations, and improve your muscles' ability to generate force, thereby increasing your overall strength.

Lastly, you can use band work to prepare for the upcoming training session in your warm-up sequence, or you can use band work as a "finisher" at the end of a workout.

Here are some examples...

Banded Leg Curl

4 x 25 each side (finisher)

Double-Leg Banded Leg Curl

100 reps (finisher)

Banded Pull-Through

100 reps (finisher)

Banded Glute Bridge

3 x 8-10 (activation drill in your warm-up)

X-Band Walk and Good Morning

2-3 sets x 10 steps for each leg followed by 10 good mornings (activation drill in your warm-up)

Prone Banded Leg Curl

100 reps (finisher)

Banded Pushdown with Supinated Grip

100 reps (finisher) or 3 x 15 (activation drill in your warm-up)

Banded Pushdown with Neutral Grip

100 reps (finisher) or 3 x 15 (activation drill)

Banded Triceps Complex

50 each movement

Banded Overhead Triceps Extension

3 x 15 in your training session with a band heavy enough to challenge you to complete all reps with full extension.

Banded Pull-Apart

3 x 15 (activation drill)

Rusin Tri-Set 2.0

(activation drill)

2 Rounds of:

  • 15 Over and Back
  • 15 Facepull
  • 15 Pull-Apart

Banded Y-T-A-T

2-3 sets x 10-15 in your training session

Banded Push-Up

3 x 10 (activation drill)

Start with the lower number of reps at first and gradually increase volume as you get used to these movements. Try to work up to doing 75-100 reps without stopping for a finisher.

Don't be afraid to get creative with how these are structured in your training, either. You can even add these for antagonistic supersets instead of just doing one movement until all of your reps are complete.

In terms of variations, you're only limited by your imagination. There are several ways you can vary these movements, such as simply changing band thickness or the positions in which you perform your band work.

Things like banded pushdowns can be done with a single-arm variation, and banded pull-aparts can be done from a variety of positions: eye-level, behind the neck, etc.

Adding bands to your training multiple times a week will yield a huge return on investment when it comes to improving your lifts and ability to steer clear of injury.