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Resistance bands have recently become highly popular in workout videos, yet most people only use them for lower body workouts. Bands provide a cheap, effective, and easily-stored alternative to weight lifting, and they are perfect for building and toning the upper body.
The first exercise is band pull-aparts. Begin by standing in a stable stance with your feet about hip width apart. Hold the resistance band straight out in front of your body, and pull the arms out laterally. Try to make the movement slow and controlled to make the muscles in your shoulders and upper back work harder.
The next workout is bicep curls. For this one, you’ll need a longer band that you can hold under your feet as you stand. From this position, keep your elbows bent at your hips and slowly pull the band upward to work your biceps.
The third move is the side-to-front raise. Again, hold the band under your feet and pull it straight up so your arms form a “T” shape. Then, bring both arms together in the front, open them back to the T position, and lower again. This will work the shoulders, triceps, and pectoral muscles.
Next is the bent-over row. Stand on top of the band once again, bend your knees slightly, and lean forward at the hips. Pull the arms from straight underneath your chest upward until you feel a slight squeeze between your shoulder blades.
For the tricep kick back, get into the same position as the previous exercise. This time you’ll have your elbows tucked at your sides before you extend the arms backward and upward slightly until you feel some tension in the triceps.
For this exercise, step back into a kneeling lunge, with the band tucked under the back knee. With elbows bent and even with the shoulders, pull the arms straight overhead until you feel your hands touch at the top.
The last exercise is the standing chest press. Begin in a standing lunge for stability. Hook the band around your back with the back of the hands facing upward. Pull the band forward until your arms are straight, then pull backward again to feel a slight pinch between the shoulders.