If you have been using resistance bands for a while, then you can well understand how vital the anchoring can be!
If you are not anchoring resistance bands safely around the surfaces, their life can get affected by as much as 70%. Here I am going to provide the list of top 13 anchor mistakes that people make due to sheer ignorance.
I shall be discussing the kind of objects which need to be avoided altogether while anchoring resistance bands. Further, some bonus tips shall be provided on the way which can act as a better alternative to these mistakes.
In the end, I shall be concluding with three basic guiding principles that we need to follow, no matter where we anchor resistance bands.
So what are the common mistakes we make while anchoring resistance bands? Here is the list of main mistakes people often do –
- a) Anchoring resistance bands around the door handles, trees, tables, and sofas
- b) Anchoring resistance bands on the opening side of the door.
- c) Anchoring of workout bands under naked feet.
- d) Anchoring resistance bands with different color resistance bands.
- e) Anchoring resistance bands on the wrong corner of the door.
- f) Anchoring bands around movable objects like chair, dumbbells, etc.
- g) Anchoring exercise bands under spiked sole shoes.
You might be able to understand some of the above obvious mistakes, while some may need a bit more description.
I will provide a more detailed explanation of the above mistakes, including several others, along with a possible solution to them.
❝ Hi, I am Ravi, your companion and a passionate fitness athlete, cyclist, runner, gym enthusiast who just loves the concept of resistance bands for their extreme flexibility. I have been using resistance bands as one of my primary fitness equipment for the last many years ❞
So let us begin-
1) The anchoring of resistance bands around the door handles-
People often consider door handles to be the most convenient option for anchoring resistance bands during resistance training. However, we often forget that no matter how strong are the door handles, they are not built for resistance bands exercises.
The exercise bands exert abnormal pressure over the door handles, which can simply rip them off the door. Just imagine the impact of handles made from iron/steel shooting at you at a phenomenal speed.
Further, in many cases, the door handles do not have rounded edges. The persistent rubbing of rubber workout bands over those sharp edges can result in fine scratches, which can soon augment with time.
▶ So, the door handles need to be avoided at all costs. There is no other alternative to use these handles differently.
2) Anchoring resistance bands around the legs of the sofa sets-
The legs of the sofa sets are no doubt extremely reliable for their strength and durability. Further, the legs of the sofa are round and smooth in most of the cases.
Even in those scenarios, it is not recommended to wrap resistance bands, especially in exercises creating unequal force around the two sides of such an anchor object.
The exercises which exert an asymmetrical force around both sides of the anchor surface includes single arm chest press, single-arm shoulder press, single-arm rowing, hip abduction, and hip adduction exercises.
Even a slight back-and-forth movement of resistance bands over the hard surfaces like the legs of the sofa produces constant heat due to the friction between the surfaces. It is known to make the elastic exercise bands, brittle, and crack with repetitive exposure.
The above discussion does not conclude that you cannot wrap/anchor resistance bands around the sofa legs in the other ways. There are some accessories of resistance bands made, especially for this purpose in the market.
Here is one of such anchor straps; heavy-duty anchor attachment from Ripcords (sold on Amazon.com). The resistance bands accessory is a high-density strap made from nylon fabric with padding on one side for providing a soft touch to the resistance bands.
3) Anchoring the resistance bands around the trees-
Some of you might love to work out in outdoor conditions. However, tying resistance bands around the trunk of the trees is certainly not recommended. The surface of the trees is rough and uneven.
Further, the stability and reliability of the tree branches are also questionable when it comes to high-intensity exercises with resistance bands.
Again, it does not mean that you cannot anchor resistance bands around the trees when you do not have any other option. Do try using exercise bands around the poles of the swings, which are far better than tying around the trees.
❝ Further, you can make use of the long nylon strap, which comes with TRX suspension bands. Or, you can just make your strap from the detachable handle of luggage bags or directly use the cotton/nylon belt of your kids.❞
4) The anchoring of resistance bands around the park railing-
Again, it is not recommended to anchor resistance bands around the park railing due to their hard surface and sharp edges, which can put your safety at stake.
You can again buy a strap made out of nylon/cotton from the market or make that in your house and use it for anchoring workout bands.
A better Alternative –
If you are using tube resistance bands, then you must be having ankle cuffs as a part of the kit. Simple use that ankle cuff as an anchor by wrapping around the railing and clipping the tube resistance bands to the D-cycle of the ankle cuff.
📑 For more tips and tricks about anchoring resistance bands around the poles, visit this fantastic article – How to tie a resistance band around a pole – Unique And Safe | Tricks.
5) Anchoring resistance bands around the chair/dumbbells-
The chair /dumbbells and similar household items can move from their place under the high pulling force exerted by bands.
Even a slight movement of the anchoring object can move the body away from the center of gravity. Serious injuries can happen as a result.
▶ In short, always check the anchoring object for their stability with few trials before pounding on the main workouts.
6) Anchoring resistance bands under naked feet-
Many, including me, have been anchoring resistance band under the feet for several exercises like deadlift, squat, biceps curl, shoulder press, etc.
No harm is going to happen to the resistance bands when we anchor them under our feet. But the question is not always about the safety of the fitness equipment; our safety also matters.
When we are pressing resistance band under the naked feet while doing squats, as the brain is already over-occupied with maintaining the posture and engaging the primary and stabilizing muscles. The toes get lifted from the ground due to the lack of focus. In some cases, it may happen due to the weak foot grip. As a result, the resistance band slips out from the front side of the feet and knocks the face.
▶ The slipping of exercise bands from feet and other anchor points is the second most common reason after the snapping of resistance bands for bands related injuries.
📑 Do read this critical article- How Long Do Resistance Bands Last – Practical Tips For Longevity
In the case of exercises involving major muscle groups, especially legs, like the deadlift, squat, lunges, and their variations should be done with utmost care.
We can make use of shoes with hard and heavy sole, which are way better than using naked feet for anchoring resistance bands.
7) Anchoring bands under shoes with spiked soles-
The above tip is in continuation to the previous advice. If you are wearing shoes while pressing resistance bands under them, always make sure that the shoe sole is perfectly flat and smooth to avoid damage to the resistance bands.
8) Anchoring around the wrong side of the door-
Always anchor resistance bands on the opposite side of the opening of the door. That means if the door opens on your left hand, then you should be anchoring and using resistance bands on the right side of the door.
▶ If you do not have any option other than anchoring resistance band on the left side of the door, always make sure that the door is latched correctly.
9) Installing Door anchors on the wrong corner of the door-
As we all know, there are four sides around the door where we can use door anchors. All four sides are not equal in terms of strength and stability. The hinge side of the door is way more robust and durable than the opening side of the door.
▶ So, always install door anchors close to the hinge side to ensure the stability of the door frame.
📑 To gain more insights about the installation of door anchors, check this article – Installing Door Anchor For Resistance Bands – Best Tips
10) Choosing the wrong type of door anchors for anchoring resistance bands around the door-
Many readers may not know that there are two types of door anchors in the market that looks pretty similar but work differently.
Both door anchors differ in the size of the block, which acts as an obstacle while fixing door anchors around the door.
It may be noted that all sides of the door are not equal in terms of the air gap. Usually, the top and bottom sides of the door have a more significant gap in comparison to the opening side and hinge side. Further, the hinge side of the door has the smallest gap of the all.
▶ It means that the door anchors with a comparatively smaller block can be used only on the hinge side of the door while other door anchor type with larger block sizes can be used on all four sides of the door.
11) Using a partner as an anchoring point-
While doing resistance, band exercises with a partner can be fun. However, the resistance bands cannot be mistaken for their weak and fragile looks.
I have a small story of mine to share with you –
A few months back, I had been doing exercises with my partner using workout bands. However, the one end of cylindrical tube resistance bands with steel clip got slipped from my partner’s hand under high tension.
The clip sided end landed over my thumb with high impact. I was profusely bleeding from my thumb. Luckily, there was no fracture but slight damage to the thumbnail.
▶ There is nothing wrong with working out with partners but always uprise your partner of risks associated with resistance bands and use them carefully under full control.
12) Anchoring resistance bands with different color resistance band-
Sometimes, we need to tie two resistance bands together to increase the length for specific exercises where we are not able to achieve a complete range of motion.
Examples of such activities can be pushing against the power loop bands for the dynamic workout of upper and lower legs, including glute muscles.
Most of the people do not have the same color power loop bands or tube resistance bands. So, they tie different color resistance bands.
▶ As a result, thicker bands remain under -stretched while the lighter bands are overstretched beyond the permissible limits with increased risk for snapping.
13) Wrong direction of anchoring –
The above mistake is related to the safety of the athlete. People unknowingly anchor resistance band in such a direction that their face falls within the reach and plane of resistance bands.
If resistance band snaps or anchor set up fails all of a sudden, the broken/slipped band can easily reach up to the most delicate parts of our body. Many accidents have occurred in recent times where the users lost their eyesight permanently due to the above anchoring mistake.
Always keep your face away from the reach of the resistance bands. The best alternative shall be to make use of eye protection gear such as – Honeywell Clear Safety Glasses by Honeywell, high impact protective glasses with all side protection available at amazon.com.
Here is what we can conclude from the above mistakes ( Four guiding principles) –
Anchoring resistance bands around various objects is not rocket science as long as we understand the four basic norms. I bet, your elastic bands shall remain safe if you follow these four guidelines, in any circumstances –
- The resistance band should stay firm in its position without any cascading around the anchor surface to avoid friction.
- The anchoring surface should be smooth without any sharp edges.
- Prefer anchor straps made from nylon or cotton with foam padding, if possible.
Always choose immovable anchoring objects and conduct stability tests by mimicking the actual exercises.
Always prioritize your safety while doing resistance training. Buying a door anchor/ pole strap and eye protection glasses while anchoring and using resistance bands is not costlier than the eyes and other body parts.
PLAY SAFE AND REMAIN SAFE
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