What is a Resistance Cord?

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  • Written By: B. Miller
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 24 January 2020
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A resistance cord, also called a resistance tube or resistance band, is a sturdy elastic cord used for exercise to build muscle and increase strength. Resistance cords are inexpensive, easily portable, and can be used by virtually anyone looking to get a good workout without using expensive gym machinery. One can use a resistance cord to perform similar exercises traditionally done with machines or free weights.

Resistance cords come in different levels of elasticity for those of varying strength. Resistance cords that are more flexible are easier to stretch than cords that are tighter, so it is best to begin with a more flexible cord. As strength increases, it is then possible to use a thicker, tighter resistance cord with more tension to increase the difficulty of the workouts.

Resistance cords often come with handles attached to each end, to make them easier to grip and hold onto. Some resistance cords allow these handles to be removed, and the band can be left plain or the handles may be replaced with clips. Clips are convenient when attaching the resistance cord onto a door, which is necessary for some exercises. In addition, resistance cords may be sold in a pack with other accessories such as a carrying bag, exercise DVD, or even other resistance cords of varying levels of tension and resistance.


The simplest way to exercise with a resistance cord is to take one end of the cord in each hand, and stretch the cord out to each side of the body. This simple method of stretching also works by placing the middle of the resistance cord under the feet, and pulling up with each hand as in a bicep curl. However, searching online will bring up many different exercises that can be performed with a resistance cord, including push-ups, crunches, squats, lunges, chest flys, calf raises, and hip extensions, just to name a few. Resistance cords are able to take simple, common exercises and challenge the muscles even further with tension.

Another common use for resistance cords is in physical therapy. Because the exercise can be customized to the patient's needs, and the resistance and tension in the cord can be easily adjusted, these tools work very well when people are healing from injuries, and trying to regain muscle strength. Using resistance cords as part of an exercise program that includes aerobic exercise will be beneficial when trying to lose weight, get in better shape, or simply stay healthy.


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