Strength training is important for everyone, regardless of age.
|Naturally, the human body changes as we age and strength and fitness has an important role to play with: slowing metabolism, decreased muscle mass and strength, increased body fat, reduced bone density, stiffer joints, slowing reflexes and reaction times, reduced aerobic capacity. These are just some of the normal changes we experience with aging, but they don’t have to be extreme. One of the most important reasons to exercise at all, and specifically to include strength training, is to slow and minimize these changes.
BENEFITS OF STRENGTH TRAINING AS WE AGE
Reduced likelihood of falls
Maintaining good levels of mobility and independence
Preventing increased “wear and tear” on the joints or joint pain
Prevention of chronic diseases
Maintaining good levels of bone mineral density which can assist with the prevention of fractures
Reduced injury risk
Greater endurance, reduced fatigue
Overall better quality of life!
MORE INTERESTING FACTS
Resistance training helps the body build new muscle and repair damaged muscles. It also helps the body lose less protein during fasting states.
Research suggests that consuming protein up to 1 hour after resistance training helps to optimise lean body mass. Grilled chicken with roasted vegetables and rice is a great post workout meal.
It is recommended that older adults complete two or more sessions per week of muscle strengthening exercise, focusing on major muscle groups. (WHO, 2018).
Completing strength training is something that many can complete in the comfort of their own home. You don’t have to buy fancy equipment or a gym membership.
It is important however to consult with your Exercise Physiologist to ensure your program is suitable for you.
Strength training can be activities as simple as:
Slowly sitting and standing from a chair
Pushing up against the wall or kitchen bench.
Rising up onto the balls of your feet
Bicep curls, overhead raises, side and frontal raises with makeshift dumbbells using jars or milk bottles.
Slowly stepping up and down from the back step.
The reasons for maintaining your muscular strength as we age are convincing.
Often getting started and knowing what you can do is confusing, and the role of the Exercise Physiologist is the best way to set up an appropriate and engaging strength training program specifically for you.