Speed training: weights vs. resistance bands


Do the Math. This article, Speed Training with Weights vs. Resistance Bands, will help you understand why isometrics with the resistance band will condition your muscles for speed in ways that are just not possible by using weights and other forms of static resistance.

The difference is that during an isometric contraction with resistance bands, the muscles’ motor unit recruitment patterns are entirely new and different than what is expected by a muscle that has only been trained using a static weight. This again is because of the two variables leading up to the final moment of force calculation when resistance bands are used instead of just one variable when weights are used.

When using the resistance band with an isometric training strategy, each attempt by the muscle at balancing and stabilizing the force while in a weakened state helps to create and re-enforce new neuro-pathways that accelerate the development of strength and coordination within it. These changes become even more pronounced as the muscle continues to weaken while attempting to hold the isometric contraction.

Applying the strategy of isometric training with resistance bands that simulate conventional exercises like the bench press has great value to an athlete. However, athletes will experience significantly more benefit when this strategy is applied during an exercise to joints in different planes and angles from what they normally perform in the gym.