• A Complete Guide to a Toned Butt: Building Stronger Glutes with Resistance Bands

    Posted by Michael Evans

    Like any other muscle group in the body, the glutes (otherwise known as the butt muscles) should be taken cared of through proper exercise. Aside from feeling great about your physique, having a strong and toned booty reaps multiple health benefits: 

    IT SPEEDS UP YOUR METABOLISM

    Emily Skye (from her blog: “Sculpt Your Best Butt and Thighs”)
    "Getting those toned thighs and sculpted behind, actually does more than make you look good in your favourite pair of jeans. Your thighs and butt are the bodies largest muscle groups. So when you work them, it speeds up your metabolism and you are able to burn more fat off the entire body.”

    IT HELPS CONTROL LOWER BODY MOVEMENTS

    “Our glutes are a very important muscle group because they help control a number of movements done by our lower body and also help to maintain good posture. When our glutes are not working like they should be, it can cause other muscles to start taking on extra load, which may cause issues with our posture, muscle pain, and potentially increase our chances of injury.”

    IT ENSURES GOOD POSTURE

    The road to fitness takes a lot of effort, dedication, and self-discipline. Despite the challenges, the pursuit for good health is definitely life-changing.

    In this guide to a stronger and toned butt, 
    you will learn the following:

    1. Introduction to resistance band training (RBT)

    2. Introduction to the gluteal muscles (Gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus)

    3. 20 GLUTE EXERCISES you can do with resistance bands 

     

    PART ONE

    What is RBT?

    Any exercise that involves the utilization of resistance bands can be categorized under resistance band training. Since its invention in 1896, these bands have become popular not only for physical fitness but for physical therapy purposes as well. Among many of its users are gym enthusiasts, body builders, Crossfitters, yoga enthusiasts, gymnasts, swimmers, golfers, martial artists, physical therapists, chiropractors, and a whole lot more! Exercise bands are so versatile that it can replicate almost any functional movement.

    You can purchase your own set of bands at RESISTANCE BANDS AUSTRALIA, the country's leading online retailer for exercise bands.


    1. MINI LOOP RESISTANCE BANDS

    This is perhaps the most popular band for glute workouts. These are perfect for lateral movement exercises, glute and hip muscle activation, as well as shoulder stabilisation exercises.

    2. TUBE RESISTANCE BANDS

    Tube bands are those with grip handles on each side.

    3. CLIP RESISTANCE BANDS

    Clip bands are those that have strong metal clips on each side, which are useful for combining up to 5 bands of various weight levels for greater difficulty. The metal clips also allow the band owner to interchange the handles from hand grips to ankle straps.

    4. POWER BANDS

    Often times you may interchange the tube/clip bands with power bands, which are basically big rubber bands with no handles.

    All products are on sale at Resistance Bands Australia.

    PART TWO

    The glutes are comprised of 3 muscles: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus.

    G-Max

    This is the largest muscle in the gluteal group—it forms the bulk of the butt. It has three prime actions: hip extension, hip abduction, and lateral/external rotation. Any exercise that involves these prime actions activate the gluteus maximus, but it is best targeted through hip extension exercises.

    G-Med

    This is a large hip and glute muscle. Located on the side of the hips and buttocks, the gluteus medius is crucial for stabilizing the pelvis. Its primary role is hip abduction. Any exercise that involves this prime action actives the gluteus medius.

    G-Min

    The gluteus medius and the gluteus minimus perform similar functions, depending on the position of the knee and hip joints. Thigh abductions, thigh internal rotations with flexed hip, and thigh external rotation with extended hip all activate the gluteus medius and minimus. Nevertheless, the G-Min is best targeted through hip abduction exercises.

     


    Check out these scientific explanations on enhancing the gluteal muscles:

    Butt-Ology 101: How to Enhance Your Gluteal Muscles (article)

    Growing Your Glutes – Science Explained by My Coach (video)

    EXERCISES FOR GLUTE GROWTH & STRENGTH | A Scientific Approach to Training the Glutes (video)

    GROWING THE UPPER GLUTES | Glute Exercise Science (video)

     

    PART THREE

    NOTE: The resistance bands used per exercise are classified accordingly--

    Loop Bands: LB
    Power Bands: PB
    Tube/Clip Bands: TCB


    TARGETING THE G-MAX:

    1. Pull Through (with a PB)

    Step 1: Loop the powerband at a low anchor point

    Step 2: Straddle over the band and move forward to create tension

    Step 3: Lean forward and start with extension

    Step 4: Pivot at the hip, pushing your hips back (make sure your back stays flat); drive the glutes and hips through to the top (make sure you squeeze you butt cheeks to the top)

     

    2. Glute Bridge (with a PB)

    Step 1: Wrap one end of each band on your feet and once it’s secured, take the band and pull it across your hip line right at the pelvic level

    Step 2: Bend your knees at a 90 degree angle while lying down on your back

    Step 3: Keep your heels down and toes down to lock yourself in

    Step 4: Raise your hips upwards

    Step 5: Hold this extended position for 1-5 seconds before slowly lowering your hips down to the starting position.

     

    3. Romanian Deadlifts (with a PB)

    NOTE: The band doubles the work of the RDL because it pulls the hips backward. Thusly, you have more resistance at the top of the motion, just like you would in a hip thrust.

    Step 1: Loop the powerband at a low anchor point and loop the other side around your hips

    Step 2: Push your hips back, squeeze your glutes, and then drive your hips forward, giving it a big squeeze at the top of the motion and holding it for 1-2 seconds

     

    4. Lying Leg Extensions (with a PB)

    Step 1: Lie down on an exercise mat with your feet flat on the floor and your knees pointing upwards bent at a 90 degree angle.

    Step 2:  Lift one knee towards your chest and, holding the band in both hands, loop the centre around the base of your foot.

    Step 3: Contract your glutes and extend your leg outwards at 45 degree angle until your knee is almost straight.

    Step 4: Hold this extended position for 1 second before allowing your leg to be pulled back into its starting position.

     

    5. Kickbacks (with a TCB)

    Step 1: Position yourself on the ground supporting yourself on your hands and knees

    Step 2: Place your band around one foot while holding the handles with your hand

    Step 3: While bracing your core, keep your back flat as you kick your leg back and up (make your your hip doesn’t rotate)

    Step 4: Slowly bring your leg back to the starting position

     

    6. Standing Kickback (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the band around your ankles

    Step 2: Lean your torso slightly forward

    Step 3: Flex your feet and kick your foot backwards

    *If you're having a hard time balancing, hold on to a pole/wall/etc.

     

    7. Angled Kickbacks (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the band around your ankles

    Step 2: Lean your torso slightly forward

    Step 3: Flex your feet and kick your foot backwards and angled

    *If you're having a hard time balancing, hold on to a pole/wall/etc

     

    8. Squats (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the band above your knees

    Step 2: Keep your feet shoulder-width apart

    Step 3: Push your hips back until they are parallel to the floor

    Step 4: Come back up by pushing through your heels

     

    9. Sumo Squats (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the band above your knees

    Step 2: Place your feet wider than shoulder width apart

    Step 3: Push your hips back until they are parallel to the floor

    Step 4: Come back up by pushing through your heels

     

    10. Squat Jumps (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Bring your feet together as you jump into the air and land in a sumo stance

     

    11. Donkey Kicks (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap band around ankles

    Step 2: Place your feet and hands on the ground

    Step 3: While keeping your knees bent, bring your leg out behind your body in an upward motion

    Step 4: Return your leg to the starting position

     

    12. Barbell Hip Thrust (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "GROWING YOUR GLUTES - SCIENCE EXPLAINED by my coach" by Bethany Tomlinson

    NOTE: The band forces you to drive your knees outwards, which helps maximize tension on the glutes. This is helpful for promoting muscle growth. To further maximise tension, don’t let the plates touch the floor.

    Also, if you are new to barbell hip thrusts, you can start with lighter weights first. You can grab a weight plate instead of the barbel, but you have to gradually advance to heavier weights to reap the benefits of this exercise.

    Step 1: Sit on the ground with a bench directly behind you

    Step 2: Wrap the band above your knees

    Step 3: Roll the barbell towards the top of your hips, then lean back against the bench while resting your arms back against the bench

    Step 4: Thrust your hips up while squeezing your glutes

     

    TARGETING THE G-MED AND G-MIN:

    13. Fire Hydrant (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Place your hands and knees on the ground

    Step 3: While keeping your knees bent, bring one leg out laterally to the side

     

    14. Sidekicks (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Lean to the side--resting your weight on one foot

    Step 3: Lean your torso slightly forward

    Step 4: Kick your other leg to the side laterally

     

    15. Low Side Walks (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "BEST Resistance Band Exercises for the GLUTES | At Home Workout" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Stay in a squat position

    Step 3: Keep a straight back and step laterally out to the side, bringing your feet back together

     

    16. Lateral Band Walks (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "GROWING THE UPPER GLUTES | Glute Exercise Science" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Widen your stand to create tension

    Step 3: Lean your torso slightly forward and stick you glutes out

    Step 4: Step laterally to the side, creating alternate movements by bringing your feet closer together (don't forget to keep your knees bent throughout the entire movement)

     

    17. Side Lying Hip Abduction (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "GROWING THE UPPER GLUTES | Glute Exercise Science" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band around your ankles

    Step 2: Lie on your side with your knees straight and feet together

    Step 3: Lift your top leg upwards without rotating your pelvis

     

    18. Banded Internal Rotation (with a LB)

    This photo is taken from "GROWING THE UPPER GLUTES | Glute Exercise Science" by www.lucylfitnesss.com

    Step 1: Place the band around your feet

    Step 2: Lie chest-first on a bench (10-15 degrees height), while your feet are on the ground

    Step 3: Pivot around your feet, rotating it internally

     

    19. Seated Hip Abduction (with a LB)

    Step 1: Wrap the loop band over the top of your knees

    Step 2: Start with you knees at about hips-width and legs about 90 degrees

    Step 3: Roll out onto the outside of the feet, allowing your knees to push apart

     

    20. Clam Shell (with a LB)

    Step 1: Place a loop band around your knees

    Step 2: Lay sidewise on an exercise mat with your knees, together, pointing forwards and bent at a 90 degree angle.

    Step 3: Keeping your feet in a fixed position, lift your upper knee about 8 – 10 inches away from your lower knee.

    Step 4: Hold this extended position for 1 second before slowly lowering your knee back to its starting position.

     

    What's next?

    We wanted to help those who are serious about their fitness to reach their goals. This guide is only as good as what you should do next: exercise.

    If you don't have a resistance band yet, the next step is to make a purchase.

    Step 1: Go to RESISTANCE BANDS AUSTRALIA

    Step 2: Sign up to avail of the FREE Buyer's Guide (this will help you choose which band is best suited for you)

    Step 3: Choose a band

    Step 4: Purchase the band online

    Step 5: Wait for the delivery (we deliver Australia-wide!)

     

    We want to be a part of your fitness journey. Like us on Facebook for more health and workout updates: Resistance Bands Australia Facebook

    If you found this guide helpful, please share this so we can also help other people set their fitness straight.

     

  • 13-Minute Full Body Workout with Resistance Bands

    Posted by Michael Evans

    Resistance training is a comprehensive and ideal fitness solution for strength training, rehabilitation, physical therapy, general exercise, Pilates exercises, muscle toning, muscle stretching, and weight loss.

    Resistance bands is a common favourite exercise equipment. It's portable and versatile--it can be used literally anywhere, anytime! 

    Bands can replicate virtually any functional movement. Not only does it add challenge to your typical push ups, squats, etc., but using it also creates better and faster results.

    Here is a 13-minute routine to tone and strengthen your muscles. Grab a therapy band and have fun!

    Bands are usually classified into 4 popular categories: tube bands, power bands, loop bands, and therapy bands.

    Therapy Bands

    - An all-around band commonly used for physical therapy, aerobics, pilates, etc.
    - Comes in light, medium, and heavy resistance

    Tube Bands

    Bands have handles on each side
    - Resistance Bands Australia offers single tube bands (i.e. the blue band below) and sets of stackable bands (ie. The Ultimate Resistance System below)
    - Different coloured bands represent varying weights


     

    Power Bands

    - It's like a giant rubber band
    - Often used for Crossfit exercises, assists, etc.
    - Almost all tube band exercises can be replicated with power bands
    - Different coloured bands represent varying widths ranging from 64mm, 44mm, 29mm, 19mm, and 12mm
    - Each band measures 104cm in length

    Loop Bands

    - Commonly used for lower body exercises like glutes, hips, etc.
    - Comes in light, medium, and heavy resistance

     

     

  • A Guide to Shoe Fitting: Buying the Right Running Shoes

    Posted by Michael Evans

    It's important to have the right shoe fit for running, otherwise you'd expose yourself to higher injury risks. Here are some tips from Runners World

    HEEL

    - Snug fit
    - You should be able to slide your feet out when it's laced up through the eyelets (not tied)
    - There should be some heel movement, but it shouldn’t be uncomfortable

    INSTEP

    - Snug and secure fit

    WIDTH

    - Your foot should be able to move side-to-side in the shoe’s forefoot
    - You should be able to pinch a quarter inch of upper material along the widest part of your foot (if the shoe is too narrow, you’ll feel the base of your little toe sitting on the edge of the shoe last)

    LENGTH

    - Make sure there’s a thumb’s width of space between your longest toe (which isn’t always the big toe) and the end of a shoe.
    - Your toes should be able to wiggle freely up and down

    FLEX

    Check the flex point before you put on the shoe. You can do this by holding the heel and pressing the tip of the shoe into the floor. The shoe should bend and crease along the same line your foot flexes.

    FEEL

    Make sure that the shoes you choose match your foot’s contours and movements. Try it on and walk around with it before buying the shoes.

    There are 5 common mistakes when buying shoes. Read the full article to learn more: https://www.runnersworld.com/running-shoes-0

  • How to Get Rid of Subcutaneous Belly Fat

    Posted by Michael Evans

    Your body stores subcutaneous and visceral fat, both of which add inches to your waistline. When they build up, you'll find yourself having an unwanted belly pooch. Subcutaneous belly fat is more difficult to burn than visceral fat. It’s stored when extra calories are influenced by the hormones cortisol and insulin. To lose subcutaneous belly fat, eat right, diet and balance your hormones.

    Here are things you should do to lose subcutaneous fat:

    Eat right: Be wary of your caloric intake. Losing belly fat mostly happens in the kitchen rather than the gym!

    1) Take in fewer calories than you expend

    2) To avoid consuming more calories than you intend, keep a meal diary and check the nutrition information on the foods you eat

    3) Be careful of the combinations of foods you eat (ie. starch and sugar together raise insulin levels and enhance fat-storing hormones, thereby promoting belly fat; on the other hand, proteins and vegetables barely alter insulin levels and it keeps you feeling full longer with only a few calories)

    • Avoid trans fats and foods sweetened with fructose

    Trans fats are listed as partially-hydrogenated oils on processed foods. They're commonly found in crackers, baked goods, cookies, margarine and fried foods.

    Avoid added fructose, which is commonly found in soft drinks and in canned, baked and processed foods such as barbecue sauce, jam and ketchup.

    • Focus on eating healthy fats rather than saturated fat

    Healthy fats are found in olive oil, nuts and fatty fish

    Saturated fat is found in beef, pork, lamb, and processed meats such as sausage, hot dogs, bacon and lunch meats

    • Exercise

    Expend more calories by moving your body whenever you can.

    Aerobic exercise and strength-training exercises burn calories and maintain your muscle mass, so your metabolism will stay at a healthy rate. You may also opt for high-intensity exercises if you get the go-ahead from your doctor. 

    • Reduce your stress levels

    Chronic stress can alter your hormone levels and result in extra belly fat.

    Make sure to always get enough sleep and speak to a friend or professional to reduce stress levels. Set aside time to relax, pray, exercise, and take a vacation if possible.

    • Waist circumference recommendations

    Waist circumference is an indicator of your risk for a variety of health problems, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides and an increased risk of metabolic syndrome – a condition that increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Know your waist circumference and measure it once a month to track any gain or loss.

    READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE: https://www.livestrong.com/article/231619-how-to-lose-subcutaneous-belly-fat/

  • How to Pick Out the Right Cross-Training Shoes

    Posted by Michael Evans

    If you need shoes for various athletic activities, go for cross training shoes. Cross-training shoes is a versatile option that can meet the needs of the exerciser who likes to mix up her workouts. Here are steps on how to find the perfect pair for you:

    Step 1:

    Go straight to the cross-training shoe section. Many athletic stores carry various categories such as running, tennis, and basketball shoes. Ignore those and just go straight to the one you need.

    Step 2:

    Try different brands to see which one fits you best.

    Step 3: 

    When you're fitting shoes, wiggle your toes (you should be able to fan your toes out). The rule is: there should be a thumbnail's length of space from your toes to the tip of the shoe. Furthermore, the heel should feel secure and supported.

    Step 4:

    Don't forget to try the shoes on with socks! Even with socks, your feet should feel cushioned, supported, and lightweight enough for physical activities. The feet should also remain stable while moving.

    Read the full article here: https://www.livestrong.com/article/71949-choose-right-shoe-cross-training/

     

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