TOP News

Health & Fit: A Top Trainer Shares His Favorite Exercises to Build Bigger Legs Without Weights

11 awesome Starbucks menu items you can't get in America

  11 awesome Starbucks menu items you can't get in America The envy-inducing Starbucks items from around the world include honey rose coffee, chocolate mooncakes, and Oreo-crusted tiramisu with mocha mousse.

Resistance bands shouldn't just be a last resort for your strength training plan. According to strength coach and Athlean-X founder Jeff Cavaliere C.S.C.S. you can use bands for a wide range of situations. A recent video begins with Hollywood great Sylvester Stallone talking about his love of bands.

Athlean-X founder Jeff Cavaliere C.S.C.S. shares 11 exercises designed to help build leg muscle just using resistance bands. © Athlean-X - YouTube Athlean-X founder Jeff Cavaliere C.S.C.S. shares 11 exercises designed to help build leg muscle just using resistance bands.

"I used to work out a lot with weights, and the check comes doing that. Your joints start to hurt... it just happens," says Stallone. "Sometimes getting in that kind of shape can kill ya. But at my age, I found the hardest, toughest, most productive way (to build muscle) is training with bands."

What Are Isometric Exercises and How Do They Benefit Runners?

  What Are Isometric Exercises and How Do They Benefit Runners? Get stronger without really moving.But some of the best performance-boosting exercises for runners don’t really involve movement at all. That’s right, they simply require you to stay steady instead—and those types of moves are called isometric exercises.

But resistance bands aren't only useful for older guys with achey joints. Cavaliere is out to prove that training with resistance bands can be used to build muscle, too.

"We can take exercises that you're already doing right now, utilize bands and improve the ability of that exercise to stimulate muscle growth because we're introducing new stress at different points in the range of motion as we manipulate the strength curves," says Cavaliere.

Here are 11 exercises for your leg day training that he recommends to get your gains using resistance bands.

Resistance Band Exercises to Build Bigger Legs

Exercise 1: Banded Reverse Lunge

"Oftentimes, this exercise is performed incorrectly; we lunge forward against the resistance of the band. The problem with this however, is that the band will be assisting you on the way back to the top of the movement," says Cavaliere. Instead, he recommends reversing the movement instead. "You are not only protecting the knees, but you are also returning to the top of the range of motion against the resistance of the band," he continues. "This will provide greater stimulus of resistance on the quads."

New Study Reveals the Secret Trick for Getting Fit in Seconds

  New Study Reveals the Secret Trick for Getting Fit in Seconds A study in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise reveals how 4 seconds of intense exercise can benefit even fit and healthy people.

Exercise 2: Banded Pistol Squat

You don't actively resist the band here, but the tool allows you to pull off an exercise you might not be able to do on your own. "We know that unilateral leg training is important to help reveal imbalances as well as demanding greater activation of the single side being worked," says Cavaliere. "The pistol squat is not an easy exercise to perform, but we can use the resistance band to help assist in the movement to reap the benefits of the exercise as we work our way up to performing them without assistance."

Exercise 3: Banded Bridge and Curl

"Simply wrap the band around your ankles, bring your heels in towards your butt, and then bridge," says Cavaliere. "This will light up the hamstrings and the glutes, helping to round out the growth of your legs. It fortifies you against injuries like hamstring and hip strains."

Exercise 4: Banded Step Through

How to Get Stronger With Suspension Training (Without Going to the Gym)

  How to Get Stronger With Suspension Training (Without Going to the Gym) I’ve had a regular exercise habit for more than 20 years, and across the decades, I’ve gone through more phases than the moon. The elliptical/Nautilus machine workout combo that was hot in the late 90s, early 2000s? Check. Boot camp? Kickboxing? Spin classes? Yup. I ran a couple marathons. When I got injured running, I trained for and completed a two-mile swim in the Hudson. (No mutant illnesses yet!)Next, I discovered barbell training—deadlifts, squats, overhead and bench presses—combined with Iyengar yoga to keep my strong muscles lithe.

This exercise hits the hamstrings and glutes at the same time. "Simply attach the resistance band to a pullup bar, step into the band, and drive your leg back into full extension," says Cavaliere.

Exercise 5: Bulgarian Split Squat

"The quads can be overloaded with bands by changing the strength curves of an exercise through their range of motion," says Cavaliere. "In this case, the Bulgarian split squat done with a band provides greatest resistance at the top of the movement when the knee is full extension." If you really want to push the envelope, you can include grab weights to double up on the resistance.

Exercise 6: TKE Split Squat Drop

This move is as an alternative to the standard leg extension because of its closed-chain nature (feet in contact with the ground throughout to stimulate the kinetic chain).

"Providing resistance against knee extension is another great way to build your legs using bands," says Cavaliere.

Exercise 7: Banded Leg Extension

Do this move if using a leg extension machine hurts your knees.

"This exercise is great for feeling that complete quad contraction and resistance against knee extension without having your feet leave the ground," says Cavaliere.

Getting Older? Do These Things if You're Starting to Exercise Again

  Getting Older? Do These Things if You're Starting to Exercise Again Here a noted professor of biomechanics explains how older adults can return to exercise without getting injured.While most young people will be able to bounce back and regain their muscle mass easily, it may not be as easy for older people. This is because it can be more difficult to gain muscle mass as we age due to the changes in muscle structure, and doing too much too quickly can result in serious injuries. This is why older people need to get the balance right when easing back into exercise again.

Exercise 8: Banded Frog Press

This move hits your hips, specifically your hip rotators. "Double up the band and wrap around your knees, bridging up and down, holding out isometrically against the band resistance, which creates overload," says Cavaliere.

Exercise 9: Single-Leg RDL

"This leg exercise will force you to move against the resistance of the band as you return to the top portion of the lift," says Cavaliere. "Less bend in the knee will lead to greater hamstring activation while the opposite is true for glute activation."

Exercise 10: Reverse Leg Press

"This exercise forces knee flexion against resistance, really activating the hamstrings and glutes," says Cavaliere. "Remember, getting big legs is not just about the quads, but you need to round out the posterior chain as well."

Exercise 11: Banded Step Up

"This is another case of manipulating the strength curves through the exercise’s range of motion to create a new stimulus in the muscles," says Cavaliere. "Remember, this new stimulus is key for promoting muscle growth when you are not used to training with resistance bands."

Try 200+ at home workout videos from Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Prevention, and more on All Out Studio free for 14 days!

Want to Feel Amazing? Walk for This Many Minutes Every Day .
Enough with the 10K steps already!

See also