A Great Exerciser: The Rubber Band!
September 10, 2006
I like to do a few backyard exercises to keep myself ready for a wide variety of physical challenges (mowing, raking, shoveling, hoeing).
I have a couple ancient sets of dumbbells and weights hiding in the deep grass---I do sets with them a couple times a week.
But I have another secret weapon. It keeps me somewhat happy and ready for ax tree chopping, XC skiing, canoeing and kayaking (including the crazy antics of sea kayak rolling, carrying and various kinds of wet paddle bracing).
It's the super-strong elastic band!
Sure, you can tie a bunch of bike inner tubes up on a tree branch but they seem to get holes and fill with water and then splash me with gross fluids when I use them.
What I do instead is order these Max Strength Gold Thera-band Elastic Bands from Amazon. By clicking here, you can, too!
Then what you do is put a loop of rope up in a tree, then tie a bungie hook of some kind to the middle of a 3-yd section of Thera-band. Do this twice and hook these to the tree-rope. Then grab the bands and pull for your life. You can basically exactly imitate a huge variety of outdoor sports moves.
Be sure to buy the 6-yard box of GOLD Max power band!
Also, make a set-up that you can take indoors when your season is done. If you leave the bands outside hanging from the tree (like I tend to) they only last a couple years. But that's not bad, really.
For your exercise actions, I start out with the basic XC ski doublepoling and singlepoling. Then I stand further back with bent arms and just do crunches (with no arm action). Then I turn around and do pole-lifting motions. Then I turn sideways and put the bands over my shoulders and do V1 ski-skating motions on both sides. You can also do ax-chopping motions. Then I do a full range of motions, front and back, to imitate arm strains coming from all directions, such as what happens when doing sea kayak rolling and paddle bracing. Good stuff! I'm done in a few minutes.
Make sure connections are secure. I like standing far from the tree and going for max strain. I've broken these things when they get a little rotty and nothing bad has happened so far. If you have a metal hook attached to anything make sure it can't get loose!
This little device really helps me for my upper body core-strength in all directions.
Related Articles & Good Stuff
Views From a Wider Range of OYB