Elastic resistance tubing and bands like the Theraband CLX are used by thousands of therapists and patients each day because of their convenience and effectiveness. Unfortunately, there is a small risk of injury when using elastic bands and tubing, particularly if the band is not connected properly, or if it accidentally breaks. As with any exercise device, it’s important that elastic resisted exercise be safely performed.
As a professional prescribing elastic resistance bands, it is your responsibility to instruct the patient in the appropriate use and safety of elastic bands. Clinicians have a responsibility to warn the patient of the risk associated with any treatment.
The four steps to elastic resistance safety
Phil Page PhD, PT, ATC, CSCS, FACSM has created four simple steps for professionals to follow when recommending patients and clients use elastic resistance in the clinic, gym or at home: Inspect, Connect, Protect, and Document.
Inspect. Be sure to inspect the band or tubing before each use, looking for small nicks and tears. Discard any band with these signs of wear.
Connect. Securely connect the band or tubing to a stationary object, preferably a closed door. Use a TheraBand Door Anchor for added safety. Also be sure the band or tubing is securely connected to any attachment such as a handle.
Protect. Always protect the eyes when using elastic resistance, particularly when performing exercises where the band or tubing may snap back and hit the face. Protective eyewear is always recommended.
Document. After instructing patients and clients on the proper use and precautions, it’s always a good idea to document it in the record or chart.
In addition to these helpful reminders, proper care is essential to the life of the band.
- Store bands and tubing in a cool, dark place.
- Avoid over exposure to sunlight and UV light source or extremes of temperature.
- Don’t stretch beyond 300% (4x resting length) during use.
- Use a TheraBand door anchor or Assist strap to attach to a sturdy object.
- Regularly inspect and discard bands or tubing with cracks, tears, or nicks.
Find more information on TheraBand CLX care and safety here. Following these guidelines will ensure a longer life for your bands, but more importantly, will reduce the risk of accidental injury to your patients and clients,