Lower back muscles do not always get enough attention in workouts. Doing the lower back resistance band exercises allow can help you avoid this.
Strengthening these muscles can help you perform better in other lifts and help you avoid lower back pain.
You do want to be careful when challenging this somewhat sensitive area of your body. When in doubt, you want to start with lighter resistance bands.
1. Resistance band pull-throughs
For this first lower back exercise you will need a resistance band anchor too. In theory, anchoring the bands behind your feet could work but it is far from ideal.
That aside, take the following steps to do a resistance band pull-through with an anchor:
- Loop the resistance band around the anchor and hold the other end. Stand right next to the anchor with your back toward it and the resistance band below your legs.
- Take a step or two forward so that you have room and tension for the following steps. You can let your arms follow the tension of the resistance bands through your legs for now. Keep your feet about shoulder-width apart.
- Tilt back your upper body as far as comfortable. To really work your lower back muscles you could start with your spine bent and really stretch it throughout the movement.
- Return back to step 2.
Resistance band pull-throughs are interesting in that you can do them in different ways.
To really make this a lower back exercise you would really bend your spine and stretch it.
This makes your erector spinae (lower back muscles) go through a large range of motion under tension which is helpful for strengthening them.
On the flip side, you can also work your lower back in an isometric (static) way by keeping your spine straight. In that case, resistance band pull-throughs will focus more on your glutes (butt) and hamstrings (back thighs).
One downside of resistance band pull-throughs is that your forearm grip muscles could fatigue before your lower back muscles. To avoid this, you could consider using an ankle strap attachment on your wrists.
2. Resistance band good morning
To do the resistance band good morning, you only need a good loop resistance band. Likely one with a good amount of resistance.
Once you have that, take the following steps to do this lower back resistance band exercise:
- Stand up straight with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Anchor one end of the resistance band below your feet.
- Slowly lower your hips by bending your knees until you can loop the other end of the resistance band behind your upper back. You likely want to keep your spine straight for now.
- Raise your hips again until you stand upright with your knees slightly bent.
- Tilt your upper body forward as far as comfortable or until it is horizontal while keeping the resistance band in position with your hands. You can either bend your spine or keep it straight depending on the muscles you want to work.
- Tilt your upper body back until you are back in the position of step 3.
Similar to the previous resistance band exercise, you can do resistance band good mornings in slightly different ways.
If you really bend your spine, you will work your erector spinae lower back muscles a lot. You can also focus more on your glutes and hamstrings by keeping your spine straight.
One of the benefits of good mornings is that they don’t really require a lot of effort from your forearm grip muscles. This allows you to focus on your lower back, glute, and hamstring workout.
Additionally, the simple equipment requirements make it possible to do this movement basically anywhere as long as you have resistance bands.
3. Resistance band bird dog
For comfort reasons, it can be helpful to do resistance band bird dogs on a soft surface. That aside, take the following steps to do the exercise:
- Sit on your hands and knees with your arms slightly less than stretched. You loop a resistance band around one hand and the leg of the same side. If you have another band of the same resistance, you can already loop it similarly on the other side too.
- Stretch one leg and raise it until it is horizontal. At the same time, move the arm of the other side upward until it is horizontal. Keep your spine straight during this movement.
- Lower these body parts again so that you are back in starting position.
- Repeat the same movement from step 2 but with the arm and leg of the other side.
- Return to starting position again.
The more dynamic lower back exercises with resistance bands on this list may be more effective but some people will find them uncomfortable.
Instead, doing an exercise like the bird dog that engages your lower back muscles, abs, and obliques in a static way could be a good choice.
At the same time, the bird dog is not that challenging either. By adding resistance bands, it can become easier to grow and strengthen the muscles involved.
4. Resistance band back extensions
There are other ways to do back extensions at home but you preferably want to use the specific machine for this lower back exercise.
Take the following steps to do a resistance band back extension on the dedicated machine:
- Loop the resistance bands below the front feet of the back extension machine or below another anchor.
- Adjust the hip pad of the back extension machine for your body proportions and take place in it. Make sure your ankles are anchored tightly behind the pads.
- Reach toward the resistance bands and hold them. Whether you bend your spine depends on what you want to work. Try to make it so the resistance band already offers tension at the bottom of the movement.
- Tilt back your upper body until you are in a straight line from your head to your heels.
- Return to the position of step 3 but hold the resistance band if you plan to do more repetitions.
You can make these weighted back extensions more of a resistance band lower back exercise by bending your spine.
Even then, you will still work your glutes and hamstrings to a nice extent too.
If you have never done this exercise, it may be smarter to start with the bodyweight back extension. This helps you understand your current strength level.
5. Resistance band Romanian deadlifts
You typically do this next lower back exercise with slightly shorter resistance bands. Another option is holding them closer to your feet.
That being said, take the following steps to do a resistance band Romanian deadlift:
- Stand with your feet about shoulder-width apart and loop a resistance band below your feet.
- Hold the resistance band close to your feet and stand up straight by stretching your legs and tilting your upper body back. You likely want to keep your spine straight for now. Additionally, bend your knees slightly.
- Tilt your upper body forward until your hands are at about the height of the middle of your shins. You typically keep your spine straight in this exercise.
- Tilt your upper body back again until you are standing up straight again.
As briefly mentioned, you generally do resistance band Romanian deadlifts in a way where you keep your spine straight.
That means this exercise works your erector spinae lower back muscles in an isometric (static) way and your glutes and hamstrings in a more dynamic way.
If you like some extra quadricep training in your resistance band lower back workouts, you could also consider doing the regular resistance band deadlift.
6. Resistance band glute bridges
Take the following steps to do a resistance band glute bridge:
- Lie down on your back with your feet flat on the ground in front of your butt. Loop resistance bands below your feet and around your hips. You already want some tension in the resistance bands.
- Slowly raise your hips until you are in a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
- Lower your hips again in a controlled motion until you are back in starting position.
Their name may imply differently but one of the benefits of glute bridges is that they also work your hamstrings and lower back on top of your glutes.
At the same time, it is also worth mentioning that resistance band glute bridges do still focus more on your glutes and hamstrings.
Additionally, this is not the most convenient lower back exercise with resistance bands in terms of anchoring the loop.
Lastly, if your resistance bands are not challenging to work the strong glute and hamstring muscles, you could also consider doing single-legged resistance band glute bridges.
Keep in mind that this variation would not offer a great lower back workout.
7. Resistance band Jefferson curl
You typically use a sturdy elevated platform for this next resistance band lower back exercise but you could also do a slightly less effect variation on the ground.
Take the following steps to do a resistance band Jefferson curl:
- Anchor the resistance band at ground height in front of the edge of the platform. You can put the other end of the resistance band on the platform for now.
- Stand on the edge of an elevated platform with your face toward the edge.
- Reach down to and grab the resistance bands in a way where you experience enough tension in the following steps.
- Stretch your legs and tilt your upper body back until you stand up straight with the resistance band in your hands.
- Slowly curl down your spine and tilt your upper body forward as far as comfortable.
- Return to the position of step 4 in a controlled motion.
Resistance band Jefferson curls are a challenging lower back exercise that can also offer impressive results if you can do them safely.
This movement really focuses on putting your erector spinae through a large range of motion under tension. In turn, it is an effective way to grow and strengthen these muscles.
One thing to keep in mind is that some people will find resistance band Jefferson curls too uncomfortable on their lower back.
How do you strengthen your lower back with resistance bands?
You strengthen your lower back with resistance bands by doing exercises that engage the muscles in this area enough and preferably in a large range of motion in the optimal set and rep ranges.
Are resistance bands good for the lower back?
If you do the right exercises, resistance bands can be a good tool for strengthening the muscles in your lower back.