Resistance Band Workouts
Strength Training Exercises for Basketball

Resistance band workouts are an excellent alternative to basketball weight training if you’re looking for cheap, safe strength training routines. They are perfect for young athletes, those who don’t have access to a weight room, and players who work out alone.

Resistance or exercise bands are basically stretchy cords, tubes, or strips that vary in levels of resistance depending on the thickness and type of material they are made from. Some have handles on the ends, and others are made into loops. You can find different lengths of bands and tubing.

They can be used to strengthen many muscle groups, including arms, legs, back, chest, and shoulders. And depending on the number of repetitions and the amount of resistance, they will contribute not only to strength development but endurance and overall basketball conditioning as well.

Strength training workouts using resistance bands provide many benefits compared to traditional basketball weight training workouts:

  • Inexpensive – You can find these bands at online stores or just about any store that has a sporting goods department, and they really don’t cost that much. I’ve even made my own bands by cutting up old bicycle inner tubes I had in the garage (though they didn’t perform as well as ones I purchased).
  • Require limited space – The bands themselves don’t take up any space, and they can be thrown in a drawer or a suitcase to take when you travel.
  • Great for home workouts – You don’t need a gym membership or access to a weight room. You can perform resistance band workouts in your living room.
  • Safe to do alone – When lifting weights, it’s really important for safety reasons to have a spotter. You don’t need a spotter with resistance bands, so you are free to workout on your own.
  • Don’t need a lot of big, heavy equipment – Most weight equipment is heavy and cumbersome. It takes a variety of barbells, plates, bars, and benches to put together a good weight set.
  • Suitable for all fitness levels – You can make the strength training exercises as difficult or easy as you want, and they can be modified for every age and ability group.

Resistance Band Strength Training Routines

Here’s a good variety of strength training exercises that target the major muscle groups and will give you a well-rounded strength workout. Perform each exercise for 2-3 sets of 12-15 repetitions.


Resistance Band Workouts - #1

  • Lie on your back and place the band under your back at the level of your chest, holding an end with each hand.
  • Start by pressing one arm up toward the ceiling and then return to starting position. Repeat with the other arm.
  • You can also do a traditional chest press by pressing both arms up at the same time.

Resistance Band Workouts - #2

  • Start by holding the band in your left hand and place that hand behind your back.
  • Grab the other end of the band with your right hand, and bend your elbow so your hand is by your right ear with the back of your hand just above your shoulder.
  • Extend your right elbow until your arm is fully extended.
  • Return to starting position and repeat.
  • Repeat with the other arm.

Video instructions for Triceps Extension

Resistance Band Workouts - #3

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent.
  • Step onto the middle of the band with both feet.
  • Start position – Grab the ends of the band with an underhand grip (palms facing forward) with your arms hanging down at your sides. Your elbows should be close to your sides.
  • Flex your elbows and curl the band up to approximately shoulder level.
  • Keep your elbows close to your sides throughout movement.
  • Return to start position.
  • Keep your back and head straight in a neutral position throughout the entire movement. Stabilize your shoulders by squeezing your shoulder blades together slightly so that only the elbow joints are moving.

Video instructions for Bicep Curl

Resistance Band Workouts - #4

  • Step onto the band with your feet hip-width apart and knees slightly bent.
  • Start position – Grab ends of the band with a neutral grip (palms facing each other).
  • Your arms should hang down to your sides with your elbows slightly bent.
  • Raise both arms up laterally to the side of your body until they reach shoulder height.
  • Keep your elbows slightly bent.
  • Return to start position.

Video instructions for Lateral Raises

Resistance Band Workouts - #5

  • Get down on your hands and knees with the band around your wrists.
  • Crawl laterally moving one hand at a time while keeping tension on the band.

Exercise band videos at

Resistance Band Workouts - #6

  • On all 4s, with the band around your wrists, move forward one hand at a time while keeping tension on the band.
  • Exercise can also be done backwards.

Exercise band videos at

Resistance Band Workouts - #7

  • Get down on your hands and knees with the band around your wrists and a 2-4” high step at your side.
  • Put one hand on the step.
  • By moving laterally, take one hand off the step and put the other on to it.
  • Repeat in the other direction.
  • This can also be done moving forward/backward onto and off the step with one hand at a time or both hands.

Exercise band videos at


Resistance Band Workouts - #8

  • Start by stepping on the band with both feet about shoulder width apart.
  • Hold the ends of the band at shoulder level with each hand.
  • Bend legs and lower body into a full squat like you’re sitting in a chair while holding the band ends at shoulder height.
  • Return to starting position and repeat.

Video instructions for Squats

Resistance Band Workouts - #9

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart.
  • Take left leg and step back approximately 2 feet, standing on the ball of the foot.
  • Place resistance band under your front foot and hold the other end with your arms bent and your hands under your chin.
  • Start position – Your feet should be positioned in a staggered stance with your head and back erect and straight in a neutral position.
  • Lower your body by bending at your right hip, and kneel until your thigh is parallel to the floor. Your body should follow a straight line down towards the floor.
  • Return to start position.
  • Do all repetitions and then switch legs and repeat with the left leg out in front.

Video instructions for Lunges

Resistance Band Workouts - #10

  • Begin with the band around your ankles.
  • Bend your legs into a ¼ squat position and begin taking wide steps to the side as you move forward.
  • This can also be done backwards or walking up and down stairs.

Exercise band videos at

Resistance Band Workouts - #11

  • Begin with the band around your ankles.
  • Move laterally stepping with one foot at a time.
  • Step to the side, bring the other foot to it, take another step, and so on.
  • This can be done in place by side-stepping with the right foot, bringing the left foot to meet it, then side-stepping back to the starting point with the left foot and bringing the right foot back to meet it.

Exercise band videos at

Resistance Band Workouts - #12

  • Begin with the band around your ankles.
  • Move laterally, stepping alternately in front then in back with each step. Having trouble with the carioca?
  • Repeat moving in the opposite direction.

Exercise band videos at

Resistance Band Workouts - #13

  • Start with the band under your left foot and around the top of the ankle of your right foot.
  • Extend your right leg to the rear or to the front and return to start position.
  • Repeat with the opposite leg.

Video instructions for Leg Extension

Resistance Bands - #14

  • Start with the band under your left foot and around the instep of your right foot.
  • Extend your right leg out to the side and return to start position.
  • Repeat with your left leg on the other side.

Video Instructions for Lateral Leg Extension

This is just a sample of the many resistance band strength training exercises that you can do. If you have trouble following the directions, check out the video instructions.

If you’d like to see strength training exercises involving weights, visit our basketball weight training page.

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