Resistance tubes are versatile and portable and take up little space. Strengthen your entire body by choosing a few exercises for each major muscle group. Resistance tubes are typically color-coded, ranging from light to dark, to indicate resistance level. However, colors are not standardized and may vary by manufacturer. Instead, look at the width of the tube. Generally, the thicker the tube, the greater the resistance. The Simple Fitness Solutions website recommends purchasing at least two different levels of resistance to determine what works best for you.
Row, Row, Row Yourself Strong
The seated row strengthens your core and back muscles as well as your biceps. Begin in a seated position with your legs extended in front of you and your knees slightly bent. Wrap the resistance tube around a bed post or another low-to-the-ground anchor, grasping one handle in each hand. Ensure there is tension in the tube when your arms are extended in front of you. Perform the rowing motion by pulling back on the handles and squeezing your shoulder blades together. Your elbows should form 90-degree angles. Slowly extend your arms back to the starting position to complete one repetition. Make sure to keep your spine straight and your shoulders down throughout the exercise. Aim to perform 12 to 15 repetitions, as recommended by the American Council on Exercise.
Tone Your Lower Body
Lower body exercises with a resistance band include many variations on squats, lunges and hamstring curls. A rotating lunge works your legs, glutes and upper back muscles. Begin by standing with your right leg in front of you and your left heel lifted behind you. Fold your resistance tube in half, holding it at chest-level in front of your body with your arms extended. If your tube has handles, both handles will be on the same side. While pulling on the band, bring your arms toward your chest as you lower into a lunge position. Ensure your front knee does not extend over your ankle. As you lunge, twist your body to the right. Return to starting position to complete one repetition. Repeat for 10 repetitions on each side.
Work Your Abdominals
'Using a resistance tube boosts the firming power of any ab move,' says Linda LaRue, creator of the Core Transformer class at Equinox Fitness Clubs in Los Angeles. Perform a baseball swing by standing on the center of the resistance tube with your feet hip-width apart. LaRue recommends crossing the tube in front of you one or two times, forming an X, to ensure strong resistance. Bend your knees slightly in a half squat as you bring the tube handles in front of your body at belly button level. Keep your elbows bent and raise both handles over your right shoulder as you twist to the right, allowing your legs to straighten. Pivot onto your left toes and then slowly return to a half-squat position. Begin with two sets of eight, working your way up to three sets.
Resistance Tube Safety
Although there aren't large risks associated with a faulty resistance tube, the American Council on Exercise reminds you to check your tube before each use for small tears, which could cause the band to snap and hit you or someone else during exercise. Keep the rubber away from abrasive surfaces such as cement or asphalt and train on grass, carpet, rubber or wood flooring instead. Wear athletic shoes while exercising and maintain good posture during each exercise by pulling your belly button toward your spine to engage your core muscles and keep your spine straight.