When I first heard about this workout, I’d made up my mind that it would be impossible — Chris Hemsworth Thor, the God of Thunder, and the muscle of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so what business did I, a mere mortal, have with his workout? I’m pleased to say, I was pleasantly surprised.
Hemsworth’s go-to resistance band workout is all about convenience — using a set of small bands, and only taking 15 minutes, his workout can be done practically anywhere. I knew that I wasn’t going to be leaving this workout looking quite as sculpted as Thor, but was excited to give it a go. Read on to find out what happened.
Sean Willers, the founder of Willers Fitness, explained to me that there are many benefits when it comes to using resistance bands in your workouts. These inexpensive bands (check out the best resistance bands on the market here) can be used to increase strength, muscle, and flexibility. Plus, continuous tension from the bands results in core muscle stabilization, essential for maintaining form during exercises. Willers explained how “regular resistance band training can enhance balance, mobility, gait function, and fall efficacy, which is especially beneficial for older adults. And, they are an ideal tool for rehabilitating a range of injuries too.”
What is the workout?
I already had some resistance bands in a storage box and was eager to dig them out and get cracking. I don’t have a dedicated workout space like Chris, so I had to make do with my living room floor, dog hairs, and all. Each of my bands has a different number, which symbolizes the maximum number of resistance that the band provides when used to their full ‘stretch’ capabilities.
The workout includes:
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Banded squats: 10 reps
To do a banded squat you need to place a resistance band behind your neck and under your feet. As you squat, make sure to keep your chest lifted, push your hips down, and push back up through your heels.
Banded curls: 10 reps
For the banded curls, place the resistance band under your feet, around about the upper middle part of your foot, and with the other end lift as though you’re curling a dumbbell. This is one of the exercises that you really need a resistance band with a handle for, as a continuous loop would be difficult.
Banded prisoner squats: 10 reps
A prisoner squat requires you to keep your hands behind your head, with the resistance band positioned just above your kneecaps.
Banded push-ups and spider climbers: 10 reps
When doing this part of the workout, you want to keep the resistance band around your upper arms and keep the form of a high plank. Lower yourself down and as you push up, rise one knee up to meet your elbow, and then swap sides.
Banded snap jumpers: 10 reps
Keep your resistance band above your knees and keep a high plank form again, then, jump up with your feet in between your hands so that you're crouching down and take your legs back quickly to your plank.
Banded fire hydrants: 10 reps
Get down on all fours and put your resistance band just above your knees before raising your leg out to the side, and then repeat on the opposite side. Read more about how to do a fire hydrant here.
Russian twists: 10 reps
On the floor, keep your knees bent with the resistance band just above them. Lean your torso backward and lift your feet off the floor, before twisting your shoulders to one side and then to the other. Here’s more on how to do a Russian twist with good form
Scissor kicks: 10 reps
Lying on your back, keep your resistance band in the same place, looped above tour knees and lift one leg up towards the ceiling. Reach to touch your toes and then do the same on the other side.
I tried Chris Hemsworth's full-body resistance band workout — here's what happened to my body
I got quite sweaty within a few minutes
I’m not quite used to doing full-body workouts — I tend to choose workouts focused on one muscle group, and when looking at whole-body workouts, I will usually do something low-intensity, such as yoga. It didn’t take long for Thor’s workout to send my heart rate skyrocketing!
I was able to complete every step
There have been times in the gym before when I’ve had to stop and call time. It happens to us all during workout classes, and I am guilty of avoiding exercises I just don’t like doing. For this workout, I was pleasantly surprised that I could complete each step of the workout and didn’t need to stop in between. Designed to be suited to those of all abilities, Hemsworth’s workout is friendly to those of us who aren’t quite in superhero shape.
I felt the burn
When doing full-body workouts, I tend to feel the burn in my glutes before anywhere else. After a few reps of each exercise, I could feel my muscles working hard. When I moved the resistance band up to my arms, it didn’t take long for them to shake — a reminder that I need to work on my arms as one of my 2024 fitness resolutions!
I had to check my form a few times
To get the most out of any workout, and to keep safe, it’s always important that we hold ourselves the right way — especially to prevent injury. A few times my form slipped slightly, and I had to remind myself to reposition my feet, hold my head higher, and move my shoulders apart and down my back. It’s easy to slip out of correct form when doing a full-body workout that moves between lying down and standing up, so be sure to check in on yourself, or do the workout near a mirror.
I tried Chris Hemsworth's full-body resistance band workout — here's my verdict
As mentioned above, I didn’t finish the workout with muscles like Thor, but found it was effective at working most of the major muscle groups in the body in a short space of time. After trying this, I’m keen to take a look at some of his other routines on his workout app Centrfit — read what happened when this Tom’s Guide writer trained with the app for a month here.
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