Fitness industry experts tend to bandy about numerous terms and names for the exercise equipment and tools they use, which can be confusing.

And the abundance of exercise bands (also known as resistance or workout bands) you can buy and use is no exception.

The band benefits:

  • Versatile multi-use fitness tools that let you perform various exercises.
  • Easily transportable, allowing you to take your resistance training anywhere.
  • Offer inexpensive ways to perform effective full-body workouts.
  • Augment traditional weight training to increase intensity or add eccentric loading.
  • Variable resistance levels offer options for everyone.

Hip bands, mini bands, resistance loops, toning tubes, resistance bands, power tubes… the list is extensive and some options often have multiple names. To help you find the right tool for the job, be it rehab, home workouts, or targeted glute training, we break down the different options.

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Mini bands

Mini bands are small looped resistance bands that generally come in sets of three, each offering varying levels of resistance. These bands help you stabilise specific movements.

You can also integrate them seamlessly into your workout program to tone your legs, hips and glutes and improve your strength in these muscles. Other general uses include stretching, warm-ups and rehab.

Therapy bands

Therapy bands (aka therabands) are similar in texture and resistance to mini bands, but they aren’t looped. Therapy bands do not have handles and come in a wider variety of resistance levels to suit varying rehabilitation needs. They have a flat surface rather than a tubular structure.

Therapy bands are commonly used for physical therapy and injury rehabilitation. Their length and structure make them ideal for exercises that target muscles in the upper and lower body with constant tension.

These bands help to improve strength, functional mobility and range of motion at home or in the gym. They are also used by athletes to warm up and activate muscles and enhance mobility before training or racing across multiple sporting codes.

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Hip bands

Hip bands are robust exercise tools that are easy to use and ideal for everyone, from beginners to more experienced individuals. Made from fabric, rather than rubber, hip bands have extra grip to keep the band in place for a comfortable fit and ensure that they do not slip, pinch, snap, roll or slide.

These bands are ideal to tone your legs, thighs and glutes, or incorporate into yoga, Pilates, stretching, and core fitness workouts at home or in the gym.

Resistance bands

Looped resistance bands (aka power bands) are generally looped bands made from heavy-duty premium latex. These bands support a wide range of exercises that target specific muscle groups to develop strength, endurance, coordination and flexibility.

Heavy-duty looped resistance bands are also great to integrate into your gym workout to add additional resistance or eccentric loading to exercises such as bench press or squats, as examples.

These bands can also support exercises such as chin-ups, pull-ups and muscle-ups, offering assistance to help lifters progress safely and learn proper form. Additional applications include use in warm-ups, stretching, rehabilitation, callisthenics, agility training, functional training, CrossFit, MMA training, and more.

Toning tubes

Toning tubes (aka tube bands) work as a cable machine, allowing you to keep constant tension on a targeted muscle. Handles on either end allow users to perform both upper and lower body exercises with toning tubes for a full-body workout or effectively isolate targeted muscles for general exercise, strength training, toning and conditioning, or for stretching.

You’ll incorporate stabiliser muscles to keep the band in alignment throughout each exercise, adding a different dynamic to common moves. This helps with coordination and balance and it also helps you involve more muscle groups.

Power tubes

Power tubes help to isolate and target muscle groups to build, strengthen and tone your arms, chest, shoulders, and back with an effective workout at home or while travelling. Power tube sets generally include comfortable foam handles and incorporates anti-snap protection in the tube. Power tubes are ideal for traditional resistance training exercises such as arm curls, tricep kickbacks and front arm raises.

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