Top athletes have access to the crème de la crème of coaches, training facilities, technology and equipment to help them train and compete at their best. And many of us mere mortals assume all those things are way out of our budget or require some elite status to even hope to use. But believe it or not, while you may only dream of having access to the top trainers and facilities in the nation, you can actually use many of the same tools and equipment.
Two top athletes in particular have made innovative yet accessible equipment part of their training and maintenance programs: Lindsey Vonn and Drew Brees. Vonn—a skier who boasts five World Championship medals, 77 World Cup wins (the all-time record for a woman) and two Olympic medals—and Brees, professional quarterback, have both made comebacks from potentially catastrophic injuries with the help of state-of-the-art products.
“The off-season goal each year is to find the best exercises and tools to help Lindsey get ready to meet the demands of competition and skiing at extreme speeds. TheraBand makes those tools,” says Vonn’s physical therapist Lindsay Winninger, PT, owner of Sports Rehab Consulting. “As a pro athlete you have a lot of resources at your disposal, and usually the newest products are readily available. But one thing has stayed consistent over the years, and that is the use of TheraBand resistance bands in her warm up routine and in her in-season maintenance programs.”
And just because professional athletes like Vonn use TheraBand® products doesn’t mean they’re hard to find or even hard to use—athletes use them because they’re effective, no matter the skill level. Here are three products professional athletes use in their everyday routines that anyone can use. And if they work for them, you know they have to be top-notch training tools!
1. Resistance Bands
The TheraBand® CLX™ is a next-level resistance band, largely because of its innovative connected loops. “We use the CLX over any other resistance bands,” says Dr. Kevin Wilk, PT, DPT, and associate clinical director of Champion Sports Medicine. “What makes it so unique is there's no more need for handles, no more tying knots.” All you need to do is hook the CLX to something or loop it around a hand or foot. That ease of use is what makes the CLX band so attractive to all levels of athletes and exercisers.
“I can slip my hand in the loop and I don’t have to worry about wrapping it around my hand. It just makes things a lot easier,” says Vonn, who uses the CLX in the gym and when traveling since it's easy to take anywhere. The CLX is also versatile, allowing you to work your body from head to toe and even work your upper and lower body simultaneously. It’s like having a full gym folded up in your bag!