These Resistance Band Exercises Can Strengthen Your Shoulders

These Resistance Band Exercises Can Strengthen Your Shoulders

It may seem like stronger arms and shoulders are just for display, but they are not. Strengthening these muscles can help you move luggage while traveling, push doors open or pull them shut, or even pick up children or grandchildren. Perhaps you want to protect against bone loss or have an easier time swinging a pickleball racket. Whatever your goals are, strengthening your arms and shoulders can help you out.

For many years, dumbbells have been the go-to weight options for strengthening arms, shoulders, chest, back, and more. People still use dumbbells every day; just go to the gym and you’ll see them in action. Switching to a resistance or elastic band provides a more unique challenge for your muscles. Plus, you can use them whether you have a gym membership or not. 

Using a resistance band can help increase range of motion and resistance throughout the exercises you do. Dumbbells provide constant resistance, meaning the tension doesn’t change at any point during the exercise. Resistance bands offer variable resistance, so the level of difficulty varies depending on where you are in the given exercise. The more you stretch, the more tension your muscles have to overcome. If you are ready to test the waters of resistance and strengthen your arms and shoulders, engage in the following exercises. Just make sure that you do a quick five-minute warm-up before you start the exercises.

Banded Push-Up

Begin in a kneeling position on the floor, gripping both ends of the resistance band. Bring it over your head and behind your back, ensuring it is secure against your upper back. Place your hands flat on the floor in front of you so that they are directly beneath your shoulders. You can engage in kneeling push-ups, or extend your feet back to do regular push-ups. Once you step your feet back and enter a high plank position, you can begin your push-ups. Make sure to keep your elbows close to your body and core tight as you lower down. Engage your chest, shoulders, and triceps to press back up. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps. 

Overhead Tricep Extension

Start in a standing position and open the resistance band into a large loop. Step both feet on the bottom half, so that the band is under the arches of your feet. Grip the upper part of the band, keeping your hands together near your chest and palms facing forward. From here, press the band straight overhead. Slowly lower your hands behind your head until your forearms are parallel to the ground. Engage your triceps to straighten your arms, keeping your elbows close to the side of your head throughout. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps. 

Steeple Press

Start in a standing position just as you did in the previous exercise. Grip the upper half of the band in each hand, facing your palms up. Flip your palms down to roll the band around your hands. The more times you roll your hands around the band, the greater the resistance will be. Bring your hands together in a prayer position in the center of your chest. Keep your palms together as you press your arms overhead until they are fully extended. Pause for a second before returning them to the starting position. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps. 

Bow And Arrow

Begin in a standing position, holding the resistance band in front of your chest at shoulder height. Extend your arms out in front of you and keep your palms facing the floor, holding one end of the resistance band in each hand. Keep your right arm extended as you pull your left elbow straight back, squeezing your trap and lat. Hold and then release back to the starting position. Complete 10-12 reps and then switch sides. Complete a total of three sets, 10-12 reps per side.

Standing Bear Hugs

Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Grab both ends of the resistance band and bring it over your head and behind your back. Secure the band against your upper back just under your shoulder blades. Extend your arms out to the sides and then press your arms forward and around an imaginary tree. Keep your palms facing down and elbows slightly bent throughout the exercise. Return to the starting position. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps.

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