All Posts tagged Theraband

Thera-band Consecutive Loops – Dr. Tucker’s Review

There are tremendous benefits to patients doing band work. For years we have had tubing, tubing with handles, Thera-bands, loops, the Stretch strap, and now the Consecutive Loop (CLX) Theraband. In my office patients are being introduced to the CLX along with bodyweight exercises before using free weights or Kettlebells. Patients are instructed to perform bodyweight workouts and then they try doing it with the new CLX Thera-bands. There is a difference between the CLX movement and bodyweight only maneuvers and I notice patients are surprised at the difference between the two sensations. The obvious things patients notice when training with CLX is a difference in the sensation of more muscle recruitment, breathing becomes deeper, and heart beats go up. The CLX creates more intensity and it seems obvious that the energy expenditure of the CLX workout is greater than the bodyweight workout alone.

One of the biggest advantages of using CLX is the way I can cue patients to apply compressive forces (increases muscular response and promotes stability) as well as traction (increases muscular response and promotes movement) forces to act on the body while having it wrapped around a foot or hand. Wrapping a CLX band around the feet and hands while performing a squat or lunge is a fun challenge and causes the body to increase more muscle activation.

All rehab and exercise tools are not the same. If space is an issue in your office, all you need to get started with the CLX is about a 6’x 6’ space. Patients can benefit from CLX training without ever graduating to free weights or Kettlebell drills. One-arm CLX training is great unto itself. Further, many classic band exercises, such as pushes and pulls are great for flexibility, strength and cardio fitness. Static holding of poses with CLX resistance is a great way to increase strength through the upper body and trunk.

The new CLX Theraband is different and it provides patients with the variety they need to stay engaged in therapy.  After a few sessions you will see very different results and realize the unique attributes the CLX can bring to your in-office rehab training. CLX bands are absolutely the first place Doctors and patients can apply themselves to learning proper band technique. For in office training and at home follow up therapy the CLX is definitely the way to go!  Bottom line? You can certainly get fit and strong with one single 3-5 foot long CLX Theraband.



New (Thera) Band on the Block

Dr. Jeffrey Tucker on the new Thera-band CLX:

“I like CLX bridging for the glut muscles, at least 3-5 times a week. If you have back pain, sit-ups are taken out of the program and I teach patients exercises that do a better job of ab work anyway, like planks or core engagement leg raises with the CLX. These get the job done!

With CLX, patients gain decrease pain, increase flexibility and gain strength. They understand that it requires lots of reps and volume. In my class we do bouts of 30-60 seconds. Athletes understand they need volume if they want to build endurance. My patients in pain understand movements with CLX improves recovery ability.  A little soreness and stiffness after the first CLX workout is normal. That’s normal in any new training – it eases in a few days and then you are ready for more reps and sets.

I highly recommend you add CLX to your regular training. Try it as part of your correctives or dynamic warm up. Start with your bird dogs, squats, pushups, and knee raises.”


Thera-band Launches CLX

In January 2015 Thera-Band will launch the CLX.

Dr. Jeffrey Tucker requested that Thera-band make a continuous loop band like the Stretch Strap and in 2014 they gave Dr. Tucker a prototype. He has been beta testing the CLX for a year before the ‘launch’ in his private practice in Los Angeles, CA. He put together routines based on traditional band and bodyweight training.

Dr. Tucker says “I combined my knowledge of anatomy and movement  into progressive CLX training” for my patients”. Dr. Tucker has 30 years of experience teaching patients flexibility and strength training. CLX represents an evolved fusion of the Thera-band Stretch Strap and Dr. Tucker’s fascial knowledge and bodyweight strength methods.

Many techniques are combined using the CLX – fascial stretch, PNF, muscle release techniques, static stretch techniques along with proper form and progressions.

“Those doctors, patients and athletes familiar with CLX will be ahead of the pack.  Come in and visit me to learn bleeding-edge exercises, new approaches, next-gen thinking in band training and therapy.”



Sometimes patients have to take a step backward to move forward, and sometimes their voyage is not so much about discovery as rediscovery. Stiffness is not the major chief complaint I hear from clients, but it is often checked off on their intake forms. Stiffness can be associated with pain, inflammation, fatigue, and any other complaint that bring clients in my office. The most common reason for stiffness is the effects of immobilization of the joints and muscles. The spinal joints, hip joints, knee joints, shoulder joints, and ankle joints are the most commonly involved. Muscle and joint pain commonly originates from bad habits of sitting, standing, sleeping, and walking. Stiffness has real consequences if ignored.

A Functional Workout

It doesn’t matter if my client is young, middleaged, or a senior citizen; I use the functional training approach as part of my treatment, especially for relief of stiffness. I  start my rehab recovery teaching patients body-weight maneuvers and floor exercises. Then, I progress patients to use bands. I incorporate Thera- Bands for rehabilitation, functional movement training, sport-specific conditioning, and group classes. The next progression I use is to free weights and Kettlebells. Our profession was inundated with laser therapy and decompression tables, while the strength-training world was invaded by Kettlebells. I like to think that I have access to every kind of equipment out there, but through it all, I am still a big proponent of the minimal and inexpensive need for equipment in “authentic” functional training, like Thera-Bands. Thera-Bands can provide the basis for an authentic functional workout limited only by the imagination and knowledge of the practitioner. Functional exercise is based on its outcome, not how the exercise looks. Don’t ask me how to activate specific muscles (that question was answered years ago). Instead, ask: Why did this person lose the movement pattern in the first place?” Thera-Bands help me get rid of stiffness and improve functional strength, which is usable strength. Functional strength is hard to measure. That’s why I attempt to identify it by using many unorthodox movements, such as assisted posterior reaches. his exercise is one of the best methods of developing functional abdominal strength in overhead athletes, or athletes in sports that bring the arms overhead, such as tennis and basketball. Stand on both legs (eventually progress to one-legged stands) facing away from a Thera-Band firmly held in place. Hold the band in both hands, and extend your arms straight up above your head. Bring the hips forward and the hands back. Lean backward as far as you can without feeling pressure in your lower back. Engage the lower abdominals to return to the starting position. Using the Thera-Bands, I teach movements that train the body to do what it was meant to do. These  can simply be broken down into four pillars: 1) Standing and locomotion (gait). One of my favorite exercises that improve the hip rotator stabilizers (gluteus) is to have clients wrap the Thera-Band (usually the green band) around the ankles and walk sideways across the room or down a hall to activate the gluteus. This one maneuver alone has helped more patients improve altered gait than any other. 2) Movements that lower or raise the body’s center of mass, such as squatting, lunging, and climbing. I have clients stand on a band and hold the ends of the band in their hands while doing squats, and perform an overhead press on the way up. 3) Pushing and pulling, such as standing rows and pressing maneuvers. 4) Rotation. These are changes in direction. For example, torso rotation and proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) band chops are a functional way to train the abdominals.

Everyone talks about the core, which includes the major muscles attached to the trunk, above the ischial tuberosity, and below the superior aspect of the sternum. Approximately 87% of the core muscles are oriented either diagonally or horizontally and have rotation as one of their actions. Our body was made for rotation,  yet very little rotational training is addressed in today’s standard training protocols. Thera-Bands make rotational training easy. The most annoying things about the bands is getting the latex powder on your clothes and occasionally the bands break while you are in the middle of a set. An advantage to band assessing and training is the observation of symmetrical or asymmetrical movements. The link between uncontrolled spinal and joint intersegmental translation or uncontrolled range of motion, and the development of musculoskeletal pain and degenerative pathology, is well-known. Often, patients are not even aware of the bad movement pattern that they are doing over and over that is causing the stiffness. Sometimes, it is only clearly seen when the muscles fatigue and pain sets in. The inefficient control of muscles and bones, poor movement habits, and poor posture give rise to very subtle and unique imbalances in the body-stability system. This puts mechanical stress and strain on the joints; and the muscular, neurological, and connective tissue systems of the body. This leads to cumulative microinflammation, which leads to pain and pathology. This predisposes joints to early aging and stiffness. A significant amount of injuries and stiffness occurs in clients with right- to left-sided strength and flexibility imbalances. My recommendations with the Thera-Band are to put the core first and to look for the following asymmetries:

Core Stability 


 and realizes how critical it is for the inner core of the body—namely, those joints closer to the spine, to be supported by the postural muscles designed with strength. You can create strength using the tubing made by Thera-Band. If you don’t tend to strengthen, the natural progression is for the body to lose it.




I usually recommend that stretching is the last thing a person does once he or she is pain-free. I see many patients that injure themselves from overstretching in yoga class and with Pilates. Stretch to increase flexibility, but don’t overdo it. I encourage patients to feel the muscle barrier and don’t go past that point. Otherwise, you start pulling on the ligaments and these were not meant to be pulled apart. Neuromusculoskeletal function involves a complex integration of proprioceptors facilitating; muscles reacting and joints moving simultaneously in sagital, frontal, and transverse planes of motion in a groundforce kinetic chain reaction response. This is facilitated by the moving body in relation to the ground and gravity. Use Thera-Bands to put patients through movements that allow you to see how an individual can control outside forces that are irregular in intensity, speed, load, symmetry, nd direction, just like sports and real life.


The purpose of flexibility varies for the different muscles around the joints. For the major power muscles, it is important that flexibility allows freedom of movement for the pelvis, hips, trunk, scapula, and humerus. Freedom of movement needs to be symmetrical.

General Muscle Strength

Once the foundational issues of consistency, core stability, flexibility, and balance control are being implemented, I then look at the bigger picture of the “outer core.” The rest of your body will need strength to carry you into your 80s and 90s. Performance as you age will be improved



Jeffrey Tucker, DC, DACRB

has been in continuous private practice for over 25 years in Los Angeles. His practice includes stretching,  yoga, Kettlebells, & FMS training. He teaches courses in rehabilitation. Contact him at 




Theraband Stretch Strap

I use the Stretch Strap to improve joint mobility, muscular flexibility and fascial, vascular and neurological extensibility.

 It’s important to check functional movement patterns then, target the tight and short muscles as opposed to long and tight muscles. One of the goals of treatment is to reprogram range of motion around the joints and help accomplish effective movement patterns.

 Proper muscle inhibition and muscle lengthening sets the foundation for skillful movements. Patients are willing to spend more time on stretching maneuvers when they use the Stretch Strap. This improves flexibility and has a strong effect on restoration of function and on relief of pain. We must remove as much of the limited mobility as possible. Then relearn the levels of stability.

The Stretch Strap is a powerful, fun, tool that helps my clients improve posture, flexibility, body awareness, coordination, and balance.


Bad Tennis Shoulder Exercises Using Theraband

Thera-Band Tubing Exercises for Tennis: These exercises are designed to help improve strength and prevent injury.

Perform these exercises with a resistance that allows you to complete 15-20 repetitions to fatigue; start with one set and progress to 2 sets of 20. Increase to the next color resistance level when these exercises become easy.

Thera-Band Tubing with Door Anchor
Pull webbing of Door Anchor through clasp to create 2 loops at end opposite of disk. Slide one   handle of the tubing up through one loop and then down through the second loop of the Door Anchor. Pull and tighten the Door Anchor loops down securely on the tubing to fix length as needed.
  Thera-Band Tubing Forearm Pronation
Secure the middle of the tubing under one foot. Grasp the handle with your wrist facing upward and forearm resting on your thigh. Slowly rotate your forearm so your palm faces downward. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Forearm Supination
Secure the middle of the tubing under one foot. Grasp the handle with your wrist facing down and forearm resting on your thigh. Slowly rotate your forearm so your wrist faces upward. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Wrist Extension
Secure the middle of the tubing under one foot. Grasp the handle with your wrist facing downward and forearm resting on your thigh. Slowly extend your wrist upward. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Wrist Flexion
Secure the middle of the tubing under one foot. Grasp the handle with your wrist facing upward and forearm resting on your thigh. Slowly bend your wrist upward. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Reverse Fly
Hold one handle in each hand, and grasp tubing about a shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms at shoulder level and keep your elbows straight, stretching the tubing. Hold and slowly return. Keep your head and trunk upright.
  Thera-Band Tubing Lat Pull Down
Secure the middle of the tubing to a door or sturdy object above shoulder level. Grasp the handles at shoulder-level and pull backwards, bending your elbows. Bring your hands to your shoulders. Hold and slowly return. Keep your head and trunk upright.
  Thera-Band Tubing Shoulder Dynamic Hug
Grasp both handles and wrap the tubing around your upper back. Bend your elbows and slightly abduct your shoulders. Bring the handles together, and cross over the other forearm. Keep your wrist straight and elbows slightly bent. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Bent-over Row
Stand on the middle of the tubing. Slightly stagger your step and lean forward at your hips. Don’t arch your back. Grasp both ends of the tubing with your elbows extended at your side. Pull one end of the tubing upward, bending your elbow. Hold and slowly return. Brace your abdominals and don’t rotate your trunk.
  Thera-Band Tubing Shoulder External Rotation
Securely attach the middle of the tubing to a door or sturdy object. Place a rolled-up towel under your arm. Bend your elbow at your side and bring your forearm in front of your body. Grasp handle and pull outward, keeping your elbow by your side, and forearm parallel to the ground. Hold and slowly return. Keep your wrist straight.
  Thera-Band Tubing Shoulder Scaption
Grasp both handles and stand on the middle of the tubing. Lift your arm out to your side and slightly forward (about 30 degrees from your body). Keep your elbow straight and palm facing forward. Lift to shoulder level, hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Elbow Extension
Stand on the middle of the tubing. Extend your shoulder and grasp handle with your elbow bent behind you. Straighten your elbow, keeping your shoulder extended. Hold and slowly return.
  Thera-Band Tubing Elbow Flexion
Stand on the middle of the tubing. Grasp the handles with your palms facing upward. Bend your elbows upward, keeping your elbows by your side and your wrist straight. Hold and slowly return.

Ankle Rehab – Peroneals

Posted: 09 Sep 2010 04:05 AM PDT for ankle sprains often include strengthening of the peroneus longus muscle, usually with Thera-Band® elastic bands or ankle weights. Based on its origin and insertion, the peroneus longus muscle is thought to be responsible for ankle eversion and plantar flexion. However, in terms of its true function, the peroneus longus is an important stabilizer of the first ray during closed-chain weight bearing, creating a rigid lever for push-off (Subotnick, 1975).

Electromyographic (EMG) evidence shows that the peroneus longus peaks in activation during the latter half of the stance phase when the weight of the body is over the forefoot in a plantar-flexed position.  Despite this evidence, peroneus longus exercises are often prescribed in an open-chain against resistance during eversion movements. the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, physical therapy researchers investigated the effectiveness of more functional closed-chain exercises on activation of the peroneus longus while measuring EMG activity. They evaluated closed-chain plantar flexion (heel raises) with a 5 pound laterally-directed resistance provided by a yellow Thera-Band resistance band placed around the middle of the foot. A yellow band stretched to 200% of its resting length will produce a force of 5 pounds (Page et al. 2000). According to the authors, “The pull of the band in the lateral direction and away from midline imparts a force to the foot that induces supination/inversion of the foot…The force of the band acts as a perturbation of the peroneus longus.”

The EMG activity of the peroneus longus during this exercise was compared to a heel raise without resistance and open-chain eversion against a 5 pound cuff weight placed around the mid foot. The researchers found that the Thera-Band-resisted heel raise produced 8% more muscle activation than the standard heel raise, and 40% more activation than conventional isotonic eversion. These findings support a more biomechanically-specific exercise using Thera-Band elastic bands for functional strengthening of the peroneus longus. The authors concluded that this exercise “may facilitate more effective training outcomes from programs targeting the peroneus longus,” although more research is needed to confirm this assumption.

REFERENCE: Bellew JW, et al. Facilitating activation of the peroneus longus: electromyographic analysis of exercises consistent with biomechanical function. J Strength Cond Res. 2010 Feb;24(2):442-6.


Abduction exercise after hip replacement: is there an optimal progression? undergoing total hip replacement often have weak hip abductor muscles before and after surgery. One of the most common hip exercises is sidelying hip abduction using an ankle weight. While this may be an effective exercise to activate the gluteus medius muscle, open-chain, non-weight bearing hip abduction is not specific to the function of the gluteus medius as a pelvic stabilizer in single-leg stance. Resisted lateral walking with a Thera-Band® Band Loop or Tubing with Cuffs is an example of such a closed-chain exercise as the patient steps away from the involved leg.

Researchers at the University of Kentucky evaluated electromyographic (EMG) levels of 4 exercises in total hip patients between 7 and 32 weeks post-operative. Dr. Cale Jacobs and colleagues were interested to see if there was a progression of muscle activation to guide clinical decisions about hip abduction exercise prescription. They published their findings in the Journal of Arthroplasty. The 4 exercises included 2 non-weight bearing and 2 weight-bearing exercises:

  • Standing hip abduction with cuff weight at 1% of bodyweight, lifted to 30 degrees
  • Sidelying hip abduction with cuff weight at 0.5% of bodyweight, lifted to 50% of leg length
  • Standing hip abduction with uninvolved leg to 30 degrees
  • Lateral walk with Thera-Band resistance band attached with extremity straps around ankle

Researchers used a level of Thera-Band resistance that created the same torque as the standing hip abduction exercise (1% body weight) with stretch on the band at 50% elongation. The researchers used this chart of Thera-Band elastic resistance pull forces to prescribe the appropriate color of band.

Both the sidelying abduction and weight-bearing standing abduction with the other leg produced an average of 67% maximum voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC).  The Thera-Band resisted lateral walk exercise produced an average of 63% MVIC and the non-weight bearing standing abduction produced 58%. There was no significant difference in activation between exercises, indicating no clear order of exercise progression.  The researchers suggested these exercises can be used interchangeably, particularly when balance impairment or postural position may be an issue.

In conclusion, non-weight bearing exercises involving open-chain hip abduction provide no additional benefit of gluteus medius activation compared to more functional closed-chain exercises. Thera-Band loop resisted walking provides moderate (>60% MVIC) of gluteus medius activation in post-operative total hip replacement patients.

REFERENCE: Jacobs CA, et al. Electromyographic analysis of hip abductor exercises performed by a sample of total hip arthroplasty patients. J Arthroplasty. 2009 Oct;24(7):1130-6. Epub 2008 Aug 30.


Thera-Band® exercise program for total knee replacement featured in Lower Extremity Review

Ongoing research at the University of Louisville and Bellarmine University is investigating the effectiveness of Thera-Band® resistance band exercises before surgery for total knee arthroplasty (TKA). “Prehabilitation” consists of pre-operative exercises that are meant to improve strength and functional levels before surgery with the expectation of better rehabilitation and a faster recovery after surgery.

The TKA Prehab Program was featured in an article in the March 2010 edition of Lower Extremity Review. The program utilizes Thera-Band resistance bands, step-up exercises, and stretching exercises.  A full-color printable handout of the program is available online.

Reference: Brown K et al. 2010. Preoperative exercise boosts TKA outcomes. Lower Extremity Review: March 2010.