22/04/2021 | Andrew Tracey
Andrew Tracey is a long time collaborator with Bulldog Gear. A coach, writer and current fitness editor of Men’s Health Magazine, he has been in and around the fitness industry for the past 16 years. Having enjoyed and endured a number of disciplines from endurance racing, to strongman, to Crossfit AT enjoys getting neck deep in the practice just as much as the theory.
For many, the last 12 months have presented ample opportunities to get to grips with our heavy duty resistance bands.
From adding assistance to pull-ups for beginners, to ramping up the intensity of your barbell or dumbbell lifts; bands truly are such a low cost, versatile tool that it’s an absolute no-brainer to add them to your home gym arsenal or chuck them in your kit bag before you head off to the box.
Despite an almost unparalleled cost to benefits ratio, you may simply have become bored of your bands, churning out rep after rep on the rubber over the last year. If that’s the case, we’ve got a selection of fresh movements for you to work into your routine, some of which we’re hoping you haven’t even considered yet!
This is part three of a four part series, last week we covered pulling movements, primarily focussing on the back musculature of the back, this week we're covering 'pushing' movements.
1. BANDED PVC PIPE Z PRESS
We talk all of the time in the industry about ‘making a PVC pipe feel heavy’, well now you actually can. Sit on the ground, with band anchored underneath your glutes, pass a PVC pipe or broom stick through both ends of the band and ‘clean’ it up onto your chest. Keeping your legs flat to the floor, drive the pipe up, against the bands, to full lockout. Lower and repeat. Try 4 sets of 15 reps.
2. BANDED DUMBBELL FLOOR PRESS
If those dumbbells are getting a bit light for international chest day, add a band to up the ante. Lay flat on the ground, with a band beneath your upper back, both ends looped around a set of dumbbells. Perform your floor press against the tension of the bands. After you’ve maxed out, you can let go of the bands and see how many more you’ve got in the tank with just your bells!
3. BAND ASSISTED PUSH-UP
Struggling to get those first push-ups, or just looking to rep out to Valhalla? Place a mini band around your elbows or double loop a long resistance band and do the same. Assume a strong plank position and lower yourself towards the ground, as you get closer the band will take some of your weight, allowing you to hit more reps, work towards those first push-ups or just get explosive! Try 3 sets to failure at the end of your next workout.
4. BANDED PVC PIPE JAMMER PRESS
Speaking of explosive, this exercise was designed to build power, rapidly. Double a band over a high anchor point (or use two), pass a PVC pipe or broomstick through both ends. Hold the pipe with a slightly wider than shoulder width grip and step forward until the tension of the bands forces the pipe up towards your chest. Explosively press the pipe down and away from your body to full extension, return under control and repeat, keeping each rep dynamic. These work as a great warm-up/ primer ahead of your heavy pressing.
5. SINGLE ARM ARNOLD PRESS
When you’ve maxed out every other possible pressing movement with bands, it’s time to go unilateral. Stand tall with a band looped beneath one foot, hold the band with one hand, just under your chin. Press up to full lockout, rotating your palm to face outwards as you do, reverse the movement under control and repeat. Try 4 sets of 10 reps on each side.