Resistance Bands for Serious Strength

I love resistance bands. Not the wafer thin ones you see in Legs Bums & Tums classes, but the kind you could catapult a boulder from! These have to be the best money I've spent on fitness equipment in a long time; durable, affordable and extremely versatile. In a series of videos, I'll show you how you can use these brilliant tools to create an all over body workout which you can do in your office, living room, or hotel room. All you need is something solid to anchor them to (and I mean SOLID, as these bands offer some serious resistance), and enough room to move your limbs.

Bands are especially useful for pulling exercises, movements that are hard to perform effectively with home routines unless you have access to a suspension trainer or a pull-up bar, both of which are considerably more expensive. (The band I use in the video below cost just £8). Many fitness DVDs and online routines are very weighted towards pushing movements for the upper body; exercises like dips and push-up variations feature extensively, simply because you don't need any equipment. This leaves the programmes lacking balance, with an over emphasis on the front shoulder and chest muscles, and neglecting the important muscles of the upper back. Such an imbalance risks shoulder pain, especially if you have poor posture and limited mobility in your thoracic spine - as many of us do.

In this first video I'll show you how to perform a Single Arm High Row; a great addition to an all-round strength and endurance circuit, or as a single arm alternative to the lat pull down or pull up exercise in situations where equipment is limited. This movement will target the latissimus dorsi, posterior deltoid, biceps, and the scapula stabilisers. It's a great exercise to balance any overhead pressing movements, and something I will often super-set with single arm overhead dumbbell or kettle-bell press.

(To see more resistance band work, click here)