Resistance band workout: Completing this minute routine regularly will improve posture, strengthen the core and increase glute and leg strength. It features relaxing stretches making it the perfect routine to do after work to wind down. For maximum results, perform 3-4 times throughout your week.
Perform 8-12 times
Focus: Activates and strengthens the muscles required for great posture
- Sit comfortably either on a chair or the ground. Fold your resistance band in half and grab the ends, holding the band above your head.
- Keep a tall spine and inhale to bend the arms drawing the band towards your head. Inhale to press. Rather than your focus being on pulling the band apart, feel you’re broadening through your back by reaching your elbows to the walls either side of you. The shoulders will stay away from the ears and avoid slouching through the movement.
2. Lateral lift
Perform 8-12 times
Focus: Strengthening the muscles required for great posture
1. Sit on a chair or on the floor with the resistance band placed under your bottom. Make sure the ends are even and you have a nice firm grip.
2. Start with a tall spine imagining you have a string pulling you tall from the crown of your head. As you exhale slowly lift your arms, stretching the band. As you inhale, resist as you lower back with control. Feel when you lower the band that you can sit up taller. Avoid the shoulders hunching up to the ears – feel the shoulder blades glide down the back.
3. Tricep press and side stretch
Perform 8-12 times each side
Focus: Strengthens the triceps, forearms and wrists. Provides a stretch for the side of the body
1. Sit on a chair or on the floor with the resistance band placed under your bottom. Begin by sidebending to one side and coming onto the forearm. With the other arm, grab the end of the band.
2. Lift the arm up to frame the face and hold the band between the thumb and first finger with the palm to the ceiling. Exhale to keep the wrist straight and press the arm up to the ceiling, inhale to resist back down.
4. Leg kicks and hip stretch
Perform 8-12 times
Focus: Strengthens the glutes and legs, stretches the inner thighs
1. Start by lying on your side with the band wrapped around the top foot, holding onto the ends.
2. Inhale and swing the leg forward bringing the foot towards your face without rounding the back.
3. Exhale to squeeze your bottom and take the leg behind you without arching your back. Continue with this controlled kicking motion ensuring you maintain a stable spine.
4. Stretch: Take the leg towards the ceiling and use the band to draw the leg close towards the head so you feel a stretch through the inner thigh. Hold and breathe deeply for 30 seconds.
5. Leg circles with stretch
Perform 6-8 times each direction and follow with stretch
Focus: Strengthening the core muscles, muscles of the hip and stretching the hamstrings
1. Start by lying on your back with the band looped around the foot and hold onto the ends.
2. Keeping the pelvis still, begin to draw a big circle on the ceiling with the big toe. You can make this movement as big as you want, ensuring the hips stay still. Keep the movement slow and controlled breathing throughout. When completed, switch directions.
4. Stretch: Use both hands and pull the leg towards you until you feel a stretch through the back of the thigh. Hold for 30 seconds, breathing throughout.
Photography: Ben McCloghry. Workout: Peta Serras – petaserras.com
About Peta: Peta Serras is a Pilates Instructor, Model and Holistic Health Coach. She holds her Diploma in Professional Pilates through Polestar Pilates Australia and her Fitness Certificate III through the AIAS. Peta is the creator of the Peta Serras Stretching Series, which consists of a beginners and advanced routine that maximise flexibility in just 15 minutes a day. Peta also runs a health-based blog at www.petaserras.com.