Resistance Bands are a great tool that’s cheap that you can use at your disposal to get a great workout in no matter where you are.
They serve as a safe way to train your muscles because they reduce the pressure that’s placed on your joints.
This is why you’ll see physical therapists recommend bands because they provide a safe and effective method of training while going through rehabilitation.
Another great aspect of training with resistance bands is that you can train with them virtually anywhere, whether it be the gym, outdoors, or even in the comfort of your own home.
They’re extremely cheap and can work both your upper and lower body but for today’s blog, we’re just going to focus on the lower body.
Here are 6 resistance band exercises designed to tone, sculpt, and grow your lower body.
1. Lateral Band Walks
Perhaps one of the most popular resistance band exercises amongst men and women.
This exercise is designed to target the outer portion of your thigh while also growing the hip dip for that hourglass figure.
It also works the hips by improving stability which can help protect your knee when performing lateral movements.
Lateral band walks strengthen the hip abductors as well which will prevent pain in the future.
How to: Stand up with your feet hip-width apart and place the band around your ankles. From here, sit into a half squat and place your hands on your hips. Then take a step with your left foot until its past your shoulder then follow through with your right foot until your legs are hip-width apart again. Take multiple steps and then alternate sides.
2. Standing Glute Kickbacks
One great way to sculpt your glutes and hamstrings are with this exercise.
Standing Glute Kickbacks are an isolation exercise on the gluteus Maximus, gluteus Media, and Gluteus Minimus.
This allows you to concentrate on the mind-muscle connection better when performing the movement.
It’s a great way to tear more muscle fibers for more hypertrophy (growth).
One of the functional benefits of implementing this into your leg routine is the impact it has on hip extension.
Because this exercise works the Gluteus Minimus, it strengthens hip mobility and hip extension which will help when you’re trying to pick up objects.
How to: Stand up shoulder-width apart and place the resistance band on your ankles. Place your hands on your hips for stability and place one foot about an inch behind the other to create resistance. From here slightly bend your torso and kick your back foot 6 inches back while keeping your leg straight. Once you’re at the top of the movement, contract your glutes to get a better squeeze before slowly lowering your leg back down to the ground.
3. Squat to Side Leg Raise
The squat to side leg raise targets your entire lower body.
When you start the movement with a squat you’re targeting the quads heavily as well as the glutes and some of the hamstrings.
Performing this part of the movement will also put slight pressure on your knees which will help to strengthen them.
The second part of the movement requires you to raise your leg laterally which targets the adductor muscle group, which is essential for performing daily activities like walking, lifting and balancing.
It will help to tone your hips, butt and thigh muscles but will greatly target the “hip dip” that gives you the illusion of an hourglass.
How to: Stand up straight with your legs together and place your hands on your hips for stabilization. From here, bend at the knee and lower into a squat. After that, stand back up and raise your left leg laterally (away from your body to the side) while keeping your leg straight. Slowly return the leg to its original position and then squat again and alternate your legs on the lateral raise.
4. Hip Bridges
Whether you’re a guy or a girl you need to be doing hip bridges.
They help to stretch the stabilizer muscles of your posterior chain which will help improve balance and allow you to lift more.
This is the reason why so many powerlifters have posterior chain exercises as a staple in their lifting regimen to improve their lifts.
Hip Bridges target the hip abductors, gluteus Maximus, and hamstrings.
They also target your core as well. Any exercise that strengthens your core and posterior chain will help to tighten your abdomen and relieve the back of the extra workload.
This can help improve lower back pain due to overcompensation of the back from the lack of involvement of the core muscles when performing movements.
How to: Start by lying down on your back with your knees bent. Place your hands on the ground at your sides and use them to keep your balance and your body in alignment. Your legs should be hip-width apart. From here, thrust your hips up towards the ceiling. Push through your heels to ensure that your going as high as you can and make sure to contract your glutes at the top of the movement to get the most out of this exercise. Pause for 3 seconds and then lower back down.
5. Fire Hydrants
Fire hydrants target the outer part of your butt for a more round and perkier look.
They also strengthen your core and hips which is always a plus as explained above.
This is another popular movement many fitness influencers use with the resistance bands because of how effective they are.
How to: Start on your hands and knees with your arms directly under your shoulders and knees under your hips. Place the band around your thighs and lift your leg laterally away from your body at a 45-degree angle. Your knees should remain bent throughout the entire movement. When you reach the top, contract for 1 second and then slowly descend back down.
6. Donkey Kicks
Donkey kicks are another great isolation exercise that targets the glutes individually for a better mind-muscle connection and pump.
These are great for building the mass of your butt and will help to round and tone your whole butt, especially the lower part of the glutes.
Donkey kicks primarily target the Gluteus Maximus, the largest of the three muscle groups that make up the glutes.
This is why this exercise is great for anyone looking to grow their butt.
You can pair (superset) this with fire hydrants to maximize the effectiveness of the movement.
How to: Get on all fours with your arms aligned with your shoulders and your knees aligned with your hips. Keep your torso and back straight. Place the resistance bands around your tight close to your knees. From here, contract your core to improve stability and slowly lift your right leg up and back towards the ceiling. Extend all the way up until your back begins to arch. Once it does contract your glutes for 2 seconds and then descend back down to your original position and repeat the movement.
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