The banded hip thrust refers to a variation of the popular hip thrust exercise. However, it’s been altered to cater to people who have more demanding needs.
This is because the resistance band increases the weight load on the target muscles, therefore, raising the difficulty level of the exercise.
That said, the first step while doing the banded hip thrust is to ensure that the resistance band is positioned at a place where it’s most likely set to get you the best results.
For instance, if you’re in a gym, you can hook each end of the band to the bottom hooks on a squat cage.
You should also double-check that they’re in place and place some weight plates to ensure it holds.
WHAT TO DO:
- Start by sitting on the floor with the bench behind you
- Pull up the band to place yourself under it with the band lying across your hip bones
- Bend your knees and keep your feet flat on the floor
- Spread your arms outward across the bench so that your upper back is able to be in contact with it
- Inhale and drive your hips upward making sure to squeeze your glutes at the top of the motion
- Lower back under control to the starting position.
WHAT MUSCLES DO THE BANDED HIP THRUST WORK?
The banded hip thrust exercise works a plethora of areas within the hip block and general lower body region.
However, the exercise’s movements i.e., the hip thrust primarily targets the whole gluteus muscle.
This consequentially engages the hip abductors which work closely with the gluteus minimus and medius.
The banded hip thrust also engages the quads and core which are within a similar pipeline of influence when doing hip thrusts.
BANDED HIP THRUST BENEFITS
INCREASES YOUR LOWER BODY STRENGTH
The consistent engagement of the hip block and lower body muscles through thrust reps builds the strength of your lower body as a chunk.
In fact, the higher intensity level of the banded hip thrust makes it more effective than standard hip thrusts.
Good lower-body strength also improves your ability to do other exercises i.e., deadlifts.
IMPROVES RANGE OF MOTION
There are a load of variations of the hip thrusts with a large number of people leaning towards the ones the involve barbells.
Whilst this might achieve the same effect, using a resistance band improves your range of motion while doing hip thrusts.
In the long run, it ensures more of the exercise’s effect is felt and it improves your flexibility a thousandfold.
ALTERNATIVES TO THE BANDED HIP THRUST
1. BODYWEIGHT HIP THRUSTS
- Find a padded bench or box and sit in front of it with your legs straight out in front.
- Place your upper back against the padded equipment and bend your knees to bring your feet closer to your glutes.
- Drive your heels down and push your hips upward until they are fully extended.
- Lower under control and repeat.
Do 12-15 reps.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
- Step forward with your working leg and bend with it so your leg reaches a 90-degree angle.
Your back knee should drop close to the ground without touching it, while your front knee should remain behind your toes.
- Drive up from the foot of the working leg and step back to the starting position. Complete the reps on one leg before moving to the other.
8-10 reps on each leg.
Lunges are a great exercise for the hip flexors. This is largely due to the fact that they open up the hip flexors and increase your flexibility
3. CABLE PULL THROUGH
- Attach the rope handle and place it on the bottom slot in the tower.
- Stand over the rope handle, facing away from the tower, and hold a side of the rope handle in each hand.
- Keep your feet just over hip-width apart with your arms extended, your knees bent and your spine neutral.
- Hinge at the hips and lower your chest toward the ground until you feel a stretch in your glutes and hamstrings, allow the tension of the cable to pull your hands between your legs.
- Drive through to an upright position by engaging your glutes until your hips lock.
Repeat for 12-15 reps.
4. BODYWEIGHT BRIDGES
This is an extremely simple alternative to the banded hip thrust. All you have to do is:
- Lie down on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat.
- Engage your glutes and abs, drive your feet into the floor and lift your hips up.
- Slowly lower your hips back to the floor and then repeat.
It’s a targeted workout that ends up engaging just the hips and abs. It’s also a great exercise for beginners and the elderly as there’s little chance of getting injured.
5. BARBELL SQUAT
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and place a weighted barbell evenly onto your traps, keeping your chest open.
- Bend at the knees and begin to lower your glutes toward the ground.
- Stop once your knees are at a roughly 90-degree angle, then drive up through your legs to return to the starting position.
Squats might just be the best lower body exercise you can do as they hit all the major muscles there, including the glutes and hamstrings. They’re also an excellent way of developing overall strength.
BANDED HIP THRUSTS MISTAKES TO AVOID
1. DON’T LIFT YOUR FOOT OFF THE GROUND
When doing banded hip thrusts one of the most important things to note is that your foot shouldn’t leave the floor.
Whilst this is a natural response to strain, it affects how effective the exercise is. This is because it reduces the full angle of movement while doing hip thrusts.
By raising your foot, you also place your back under excessive strain which can lead to back injuries.
2. LOOSE ELBOWS
Keep your elbows tense. This ensures you don’t use the momentum from your swinging elbows to aid in the movements.
3. NOT MAINTAINING A NEUTRAL NECK POSITION
Maintaining a neutral neck position is crucial to keep the right parts of the body tense. As such, this enables the exercise to take effect.
A neutral neck position also protects from neck or spine injuries from enduring excessive amounts of strain.
The banded hip thrust is a highly effective target exercise for the lower body that comes with great flexibility due to its range of motion.
That said it’s an advanced variation of a simple hip thrust. As such, take your time before graduating to the exercise.