Resistance bands may be pieces of fitness equipment but they do not look as impressive as a barbell setup. Find out if you can still lift heavy with bands.
In our list of the best heavy resistance bands the most challenging model offers 200 pounds (90.7 kg) of resistance.
It is true that this is not always enough for stronger individuals that want to do heavier lifts.
That being said, you have to keep in mind that you can use multiple bands at the same time to get heavier combinations.
This means you can still lift heavy with resistance bands. At least heavy enough for most people and exercises.
In turn, resistance bands can likely help you build just as much muscle as traditional free weights if you implement a good workout routine.
How much “weight” do resistance bands offer?
Resistance band brands typically include a number that represents how much force the piece of fitness equipment offers.
Some of the most challenging resistance bands offer 200 pounds (90.7 kg) of resistance.
Many people will find this lacking for heavy resistance bands exercises like deadlifts. However, you do have to keep in mind that it is possible to use multiple resistance bands at the same time.
It is true that this might be less convenient because of the thicker grip.
Even so, it also means resistance bands can theoretically offer a lot of weight. Likely more than enough for most people.
Can you get big with just resistance bands?
To get big, aka build muscle, you have to challenge your muscles with enough resistance and repetitions, give your body enough nutrients, and give your body enough rest.
Because resistance bands can offer a lot of resistance for basically any important muscle, you can get big with just these pieces of fitness equipment and good workout and diet plans.
Exactly how heavy your resistance bands should be will vary from exercise to exercise and person to person.
You generally want to keep the optimal set and repetition ranges for your goals in mind and choose a resistance where you can barely complete these amounts.
Are resistance bands equivalent to weights?
While both resistance bands and weights can help you build muscle, they are not equivalent in many other ways too.
For example, resistance bands get more challenging as you stretch them out farther. This will typically offer more resistance at the end of the concentric movement than versions of the free weight exercises.
The different tension “trajectory” is not necessarily better or worse for everyone. Different training goals and personal preferences play a role in your choice.
Additionally, resistance bands or free weights can be better for certain individual exercises.
So from a high-level view, it is not harder to build muscle with resistance bands than with weights.
At the same time, each resistance option has its advantages and disadvantages that could be better for certain movements, people, and situations.
How long after using resistance bands do you see results?
By now it is clear that using resistance bands can help you get closer to a variety of fitness goals. Even so, you may want to know when you can expect any differences.
Certain results like improved mood and better sleep tend to happen after your first resistance band workout. You should also already burn a few extra calories by moving more intensely.
If your muscles are already visible, you can likely start to see some muscle growth after 2 weeks of using resistance bands in a good workout routine. Even in just a month of serious training, you can see nice results.
At the same time, after the initial easy gains, you will likely need multiple months, if not longer, of consistent quality training, to really see a lot of muscle growth and get really big with resistance bands.