The Best Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders

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If you’re looking for some great resistance band exercises for back and shoulders, then keep on reading. This workout has exercises to help you tighten and tone your back, shoulders, and entire upper body.

All the exercises listed below are done using a resistance band instead of traditional weights. Resistance bands are great because they are inexpensive, portable, versatile, and take up very little space.

This makes them a very convenient alternative to traditional weights. Especially if you’re trying to build an inexpensive home gym or don’t have a large space for workout equipment.

The Best Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders

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The Best Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders

Lat Pull Down

Lat Pulldown - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

The first resistance bad exercise for your back and shoulders is called the Lat Pulldown and works your upper back. It helps tighten and tone the muscles that help with good posture and spinal stability.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Grip the resistance band tight with both hands shoulder-width distance apart.
  2. Hold both hands straight up overhead with the band held taught between them.
  3. Keep both arms should-width apart and your palms facing forward.
  4. Next, slowly bring your elbows down and tip your hands slightly backward so the loop band goes behind your head.
  5. Slowly release back up overhead.

Upright Row

Upright row - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

The next exercise to help tighten and tone your back and shoulders is the Upright Row. The Upright Row strengthens your upper back and the backside of your shoulders.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Stand in a lunge and place your front foot on the center of your resistance band.
  2. Grip the ends of the resistance band tightly in both hands. Keep your palms facing your body.
  3. Pull both hands up toward your chest, leading with the elbows. Be sure to keep your core engaged and to keep from turning or twisting your upper body.
  4. Pause at the top and slowly release your hands back down to your sides.

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Back Fly

Back Fly - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

Next on our list of resistance band exercises for back and shoulders is the Back Fly. The Back Fly targets the muscles in the upper back, especially the trapezius muscles.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Stand in a lunge and place your front foot on the center of your resistance band.
  2. Hinge forward about 45 degrees. Be sure to keep your back straight and core engaged so you don’t put a strain on your lower back. Keep your head focused on the ground.
  3. Grip the ends of the resistance band tightly in each hand with your palms facing each other.
  4. Slowly lift both arms up and out to the side. Lift until your hands are parallel with your shoulders.
  5. Slowly release your hands back toward the ground.

Superman Row

Superman row - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

The next exercise we’re going to cover is the Superman Row. The Superman Row is a great exercise to tighten and strengthen your entire back.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Lay down on your stomach and stretch your legs and arms out. Make sure your arms are straight out in front of you.
  2. Grip the resistance band in each hand. Your grip should be in a position that the band is taught between your hands but isn’t stretched too tight.
  3. Lift your chest and upper body off the floor.
  4. Pull the resistance band and both hands back toward your chest. Make sure to keep your elbows close to your side and maintain the lift in your upper body.
  5. Then slowly extend your arms back out in front.
  6. Lower your chest back to the floor.

resistance bands

One Arm Shoulder Press

One arm shoulder press - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

Next on the list of resistance band exercises for back and shoulders is the One Arm Shoulder Press. The One Arm Shoulder Press is great for strengthening your chest, shoulders, triceps, and upper back.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Hold the resistance band in one hand and let it hang behind your back.
  2. Take your other hand and reach behind you and hold the band where it hangs at your lower back. Keep this bottom grip firm and don’t let it move throughout the exercise.
  3. Adjust both grips until the resistance band is held tight between your hands.
  4. Starting with your top elbow parallel to the ground, straighten the top arm toward the sky.
  5. Slowly release back down.

Bent Over Row

Bent over row - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

The next exercise for your back and shoulders is the Bent Over Row. The Bent Over Row targets the muscles in your upper back as well as your triceps.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Stand in a lunge and place your front foot on the center of your resistance band.
  2. Hinge forward about 45 degrees. Be sure to keep your back straight and core engaged so you don’t put a strain on your lower back. Keep your head focused on the ground.
  3. Grip the ends of the resistance band tightly in each hand with your palms facing each other.
  4. Keeping your arms close to your side, pull your elbows up and behind you.
  5. Lift your hands to about chest height. Then slowly lower them back down.

Front Raise

Front raise - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

Next on our list of resistance band exercises for back and shoulders is the Front Raise. The Front raise works the front of the shoulders and the middle of the back.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Stand in a lunge and place your front foot on the center of your resistance band.
  2. Grip the ends of the resistance band tightly in both hands. Keep your palms facing behind you.
  3. Keeping your core engaged, lift both hands straight up in front of you until they are parallel with the ground.
  4. Slowly lower your arms back down.

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Plank Row

Plank row - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

Another great resistance band exercise for your back and shoulders is the Plank Row. The Plank Row works the muscles in your mid and upper back.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Get into a plank position. Your arms should be directly below your shoulders and your feet side by side. Keep your legs out behind you, core engaged, and a straight line from your head to your heels.
  2. Place the middle of the resistance band underneath your right palm.
  3. Grip the resistance band with your left hand about 4-5 inches away.
  4. Pull your left elbow up toward the sky in a row.
  5. Lower your left hand back toward the ground. Repeat on the left side until you’ve finished the desired number of reps. Then switch your grips and repeat on the right side.

Shoulder Shrug

Shoulder shrug - Resistance band exercises for back and shoulders

The last resistance band exercise for your back and shoulders is the Shoulder Shrug. This small but powerful exercise is great for strengthening your shoulders.

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Stand in a lunge and place your front foot on the center of your resistance band.
  2. Grip the resistance band in each hand. If the resistance band isn’t already stretched tight, adjust your grip farther down the band until it is.
  3. Keeping your core engaged and your hands by your sides, shrug your shoulders up toward your ears.
  4. Slowly release them back down.

resistance bands

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Benefits of Using Resistance Bands

Resistance bands are one of my favorite pieces of workout equipment for strengthening not just the back and shoulders, but the entire body. I have workouts for strengthening your arms and your core using resistance bands too.

In fact, I actually prefer using resistance bands over dumbbells or weight machines for most of my workouts. They have been a staple in my home gym for a long time.

Here are some of my favorite features:

  • Versatile: Not only are resistance bands great for full-body strength training, but you can also use them for cardio, stretching, and physical therapy. Very few other types of workout equipment can be used for so many different types of workouts.
  • Inexpensive: Resistance bands don’t cost a lot of money. Even good quality ones are waaay cheaper than dumbbells.
  • Space efficient: Resistance bands are super small. This is nice if you don’t have a lot of room for lots of gym equipment. This also makes them great for traveling.
  • Family-friendly: If my kids get into my resistance bands, I don’t have to worry very much about them getting hurt. I’ve had more than one heart attack, however, after my toddler got a hold of some of my dumbbells.
  • Get a better workout: Because resistance bands are stretchy and don’t have their own rigid support, they are a little tougher to maneuver around when you’re exercising. This requires your body to use more stabilization muscles while exercising and gives your whole body a better workout.

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What to Look for When Purchasing a Resistance Band

Before you get started on these resistance band exercises for back and shoulders, you need to be sure that you have a good resistance band on hand. When purchasing a resistance band, you want to pay attention to 3 things: quality, type, and what you’ll be using them for.

It’s pretty obvious why quality is important. No one wants to buy something that falls apart after a few uses.

It’s also important to pay attention to what type of resistance band you’re buying and what you want to use it for. Different types of bands are better for different types of workouts.

Quality

You want to be sure that any resistance band you buy is going to be made of good, strong materials. The last thing you want is your resistance band ripping or tearing over time.

It’s definitely worth paying an extra dollar or two to make sure you don’t have to worry about your band flinging in your face because it tore right in the middle of a workout.

I like using these resistance bands here.

Types of Resistance Bands

The next thing you want to consider before purchasing a resistance band is what type you need and how you’ll be using it. There are 5 main types of resistance bands.

Most can be easily adapted for most types of workouts, but some will suit your needs better than others.

Flat Resistance Bands

These resistance bands are long flat bands that are great for strength training and physical therapy. This is the type of band I used for this workout.

Flat resistance bands are typically made of durable rubber latex. I like them because they tend to come in lighter resistance levels which is great for arm workouts.

I also like them because they are the most versatile for your workouts. They are long and not looped so you have a lot more options for how you want to use them.

This is a great resistance band if you’re new to using them and want something simple and easy to use.

You can find some here.

Loop Resistance Bands

Loop resistance bands are very similar to flat resistance bands except they are shaped in a small flat loop. The circle design makes these great for use in lower body and ab exercises.

Like the flat resistance bands, they are made of durable rubber latex. These are my second favorite type of resistance bands. They are almost as versatile as the flat ones.

This is a good resistance band to use if you’re new to using them and want to do a lot of lower body exercises.

You can find some here.

Fabric Loop Resistance Bands

Another type of resistance band is the fabric loop resistance band. These bands are similar to the loop resistance bands I mentioned earlier, except they are made of fabric.

Because they’re made of fabric instead of rubber, they tend to have a much higher resistance level. Whereas rubber loop bands tend to stretch pretty far, fabric bands are a lot stronger and don’t stretch as far.

The fabric and the wider width help them stay in place and not slip as much. This makes them ideal for doing thigh, glute, and lower body workouts.

This is a good resistance band to use if you want to do lower body exercises and want to increase the difficulty level beyond the rubber loop bands.

You can find some here.

Tube Resistance Bands

The next type of resistance band is the tube resistance band. Tube resistance bands are made up of rubber tubes attached to foam handles for easy gripping.

These resistance bands are made of a stronger rubber material than the flat or loop resistance bands. They work great for strengthening your entire body because the handles allow a lot of options for increasing or decreasing the resistance and tension of your workouts.

Some people often find the handles make them a little easier to use and hold as well.

I haven’t used these bands as much because, to be perfectly honest, when I first started using resistance bands they intimidated me a little. There were a few too many options with all the handles and I just didn’t know what to do with them.

I opted for trying the loop and flat bands first because they looked simpler to use. A few years later and I haven’t felt the need to switch because I’m still able to get a great workout with the ones I have.

These are good resistance bands if you’re a little more comfortable with resistance bands and really want to increase the difficulty level.

You can find them here.

Power Resistance Bands

The last type of resistance band are power resistance bands. Power resistance bands are similar to loop bands except they are much longer and much stronger.

Loop resistance bands typically max out at a resistance level of 30lbs at their heaviest resistance. Power resistance bands can go all the way up to a resistance level of 150lbs.

This makes them great for getting enough resistance to support your entire body. You could use them for things like assisted pull-ups or dips.

They also make a great replacement for higher-weight dumbbells.

These are good resistance bands to use if you will be doing exercises that you want the band to help support your body weight. Or if you are looking to do exercises with a high-level resistance that replicate what you would get from heavy weights or weight machines.

You can find them here.

resistance bands

Tips for Using Resistance Bands

These resistance band exercises for back and shoulders are pretty straightforward and I chose an easy to use resistance band, but it’s still good to keep these tips in mind before you do your workout:

  • Always look over your band before you use it to check for damage or tearing.
  • Don’t use the bands on rough or abrasive surfaces that could rip or tear it.
  • Go slow. It provides a better workout and lowers the chance of injury.
  • Don’t release the bands when they’re under tension. Return the bands to their original length before you let go.
  • Don’t use soap or cleaning products on the bands. It can weaken or damage them. Just wipe them clean with a damp cloth.
  • Don’t use bands with a resistance level that compromises your form. If the band is too strong to do the moves correctly, switch to a lower resistance band.

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Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders: Full Workout

To use these resistance band exercises for a full workout, follow this routine. Repeat the entire sequence 2 times.

For this routine, I used a band with light resistance. I would recommend sticking with a light band to avoid injury unless you train your back and shoulders on a regular basis.

  1. Lat Pull Down – 10-12 reps
  2. One Arm Shoulder Press – 10-12 reps
  3. Upright Row – 10-12 reps
  4. Back Fly – 10-12 reps
  5. Front Raise – 10-12 reps
  6. Bent Over Row – 10-12 reps
  7. Shoulder Shrug – 10-12 reps
  8. Superman Row – 10-12 reps
  9. Plank Row – 10 reps on each side

If you want to download a free printable copy of this workout, fill in the form below. And don’t forget to make sure you have a good resistance band! I recommend this one here.

Conclusion to Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders

Ready to give these resistance band exercises for back and shoulders a try? Tell me in the comments below or email me at Candice@littlestepsbighappy.com. Follow me on Pinterest for more beginner home workouts.

Pin this for later!!👇👇

The Best Resistance Band Exercises for Back and Shoulders

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