Not having enough time in the day is probably the biggest excuse why people skip the gym and miss their workout. This is exactly where exercise bands come into play. They are the perfect tool for a busy person to use. It allows anyone to exercise anywhere which means getting a workout in at home, the office or even in a hotel room when traveling. Resistance bands are extremely portable, allowing you to exercise at your most convenient time throughout the day. They are also very inexpensive and don’t take up any space at all. You can train all of your muscle groups with just one handy gadget. In this exercise guide, we will cover side lateral raises which is a great exercise for developing your deltoids (shoulders).
Muscles Targeted: If you want to have strong and defined shoulders, do some side lateral raises as part of your workout. This exercise targets your deltoids which are the triangular-shaped muscles on your shoulders. Developing these muscles will help to build a V-shaped physique which is the appearance of broad shoulders and a narrow waist.
Exercise Instructions (two arms): Stand with both feet firmly on the ground with a slight bend in your knees. Grasp both handles of the exercise bands and then step on the middle part with one foot. Allow your arms to rest naturally to your sides. Slowly lift both arms out and up to the top and raise them to about eye level. Stop and flex for one second at the top, and then gradually lower them back down to your sides. You can do one arm at a time, or both arms at the same time as a variation of the same exercise. One repetition consists of one full up and down movement.
Exercise Instructions (one arm): Using an elastic exercise band, grab a handle in each hand and step on the middle of the band with both feet at shoulder width apart. Allow your hands to hang at your sides with your palms facing backward. Keeping both arms straight, raise one arm until it becomes parallel to the floor. Slowly return to the start position and repeat with your other arm.
Things To Avoid: If you are doing the side lateral raises for the first time, ask a friend or family member to spot you. You can also use a mirror to check your technique. Form is more important in this exercise versus the overall number of repetitions. When performing the side lateral raise, stand tall and look straight ahead as you raise your arms up and down. Don’t rush the exercise or use jerky uncontrolled movements. When your arms reach the top, flex your deltoid muscles before lowering your arms back down. Bend your elbows slightly and exhale as you raise your arms up. Pause for one second at the top, then inhale as you return your arms down to the starting position. Do not raise your arms way above your head and focus on your hands being at about eye level. If you need more resistance, place both feet on the band or use a bigger band with thicker tubing.
Reps and Sets: If you are a beginner, start with 8-10 repetitions per set. More advanced people will do 20-30 reps per set. Do 3-5 sets for side lateral raises and perform this exercise 1-2 times per week for great results.
Other Exercises To Use: Combine side lateral raises with other shoulder exercises such as bent over rear deltoid raises, upright deltoid raises and the overhead shoulder press for a complete shoulder workout.