Isometric training can be a great way to increase your strength and agility.
This kind of training manipulates a particular muscle or group of muscles while the joint itself remains stagnant. If you have ever taken a Barre class, you can understand how this works when they say up an inch and down an inch. Your muscles will start to burn and shake.
Here are a few of our top tips when it comes to isometric training with added resistance.
There are many different isometric exercises you can do that will enhance your fitness training. Whether you’re taking a yoga class, barre or pilates, we can help you use our wide array of resistance training tools to strengthen your muscles through isometrics. Through our Stretch and Mobility Strap, Squat Cordz and Ankle Cordz, simple exercises like plies or squats can become extremely effective forms of resistance training.
The Stretch and Mobility Strap
Stretching is a crucial component to any type of exercise you complete. Whether you are practicing Yin yoga or running a marathon, stretching is key to keeping your body healthy. Stretching can also be a way to strengthen and reinforce your muscles through isometric training. When you use our Stretch and Mobility Strap, you are creating an isometric contraction that will lead to deeper stretches and ultimately, better flexibility. This strap is great to use after your muscles are warmed up and at the end of any workout. Below are a couple of stretches where the effects can be amplified with the Stretch and Mobility Strap:
- Hamstring Stretch – Lie on the floor and loop the band around your right foot, creating additional tension by grabbing the bands closer to your right foot. Straighten your right leg as much as possible while keeping your left leg bent on the floor. Pull the right leg towards you to help aid in stretching the back of the leg. Repeat the exercise for your left leg.
- Shoulder Stretch – Step on the band and grab the other end with both hands roughly shoulder width apart. Move your arms forward, back and side-to-side to help open up your shoulders.
If you’ve ever been to a Barre or pilates class, you have a full understanding for just how much the chair pose can burn. With the addition of our Squat Cordz you can add your shoulders into the mix. The goal of squats is to manipulate and strengthen your quadriceps and gluteus. Adding the slightest resistance to your isometric training can help to greatly increase your results.
To perform a chair pose using our Squat Cordz, follow these steps:
- Stand on the resistance band with your feet about shoulder width apart and hold the handles close to your shoulders so that the band is behind the back of your arms.
- Slowly lower down into chair position while keeping your core tight and your chest lifted high.
- Press back through your heels while squeezing your glutes.
Our Ankle Cordz can be used when completing isometric exercises like leg curls, hip flexion, and some rehab exercises as well. Below are a few exercises that are commonly used with our Ankle Cordz:
- Floor Hip Abductions – The goal of floor hip abductions as you may imagine is to strengthen the abductor muscles of the hips. To perform this exercise, attach the resistance band to both ankles, lie on one side with your hips stacked on each other and your head supported by your hand. Lift your leg up as far as the resistance band will stretch and then lower the leg. Switch sides and perform the exercise with your other leg.
- Monster Walk – This exercise helps to strengthen the muscles of the glutes and abductors. First attach the bands to both ankles and begin taking wide steps out to your left and then pull the right foot in. Continue taking steps to the left until you feel a deep burn in your hip and glute. Next try the exercise with your right side.
Adding Resistance Training to Your Yoga and Pilates Workouts
Are you in love with yoga and pilates but looking to add a bit more challenge? If so, we’ve put together a few exercises that will offer the benefits of isometric and resistance training. Add resistance to the following yoga and pilates poses to make them more challenging.
- Half Moon – The half moon yoga exercise is great for creating openness in the hip muscles. By adding a resistance band to your top hand and bottom foot you’ll force yourself to have to work harder to balance and keep an expansive chest.
- Chair – You actually won’t need a chair with this yoga pose, but it can help to significantly boost spinal strength. This exercise requires openness of the front torso while you deepen the bend in your legs. Keep in mind that your weight should be on the backs of your heels to ensure you have proper alignment of your shoulders and hips. You’ll place one end of the resistance band under both heels and then stretch your arms above your head while keeping your legs bent to create the “chair” effect.
- Straight Leg Lunge With Bicep Curl – Stand so that one foot is in the band and you’re holding both sides of the band on either side with your elbows bent at your waist. Place the other foot back into a straight leg lunge and then lower into a low lunge while keeping your back straight and pulling the band up to shoulder height while keeping your elbows in against your sides.
- Side Lying Straight Leg Lift – Lie on one side of a mat and support your head with your hand. Place the band around your top foot and hold the other end of the band using the hand that’s not behind your head. Point your toe and lift your top leg towards the sky. Try to resist the urge to lower your leg back down for as long as you can.