The benefits of strength training at any age

Strength exercises increase the power of a specific muscle by challenging it with some form of resistance. That could be weights, exercise bands, or even your own body weight. Here are some reasons to start strength training today.

The benefits of strength training at any age

Consider weight training to lessen the effects of aging

The usual method is careful, slow lifting and lowering of a weight to target a specific muscle or muscle group.

  • If you think this form of exercise is best left to the young'uns, think again. This is probably the most important form of exercise you need when it comes to preventing the frailty and disability associated with aging.
  • Why? Without muscle strength, your ability to walk, sit, stand and bend gradually fades. Welcome then to sarcopenia-land, the land of wasted muscles.
  • When you observe seniors who struggle to stand or walk, it's for one reason only — their muscle strength has gone.
  • Yes, injury or disease may have curtailed their capacity for exercise or activity, but at the end of the day, it's still weak muscles that limit their mobility.
  • And only healthier muscles — achieved through strengthening exercises — can return that mobility.

The benefits of strength training

Strength training has other important benefits.

  • It reduces the risk and symptoms of osteoporosis, heart disease, arthritis, and type 2 diabetes.
  • It helps improve your sleep and reduces your risk of depression.
  • At least one study also found that it improves balance — even in middle-age people you wouldn't think would have balance problems.
  • And don't worry about injuries; the risk is low with strength activities, particularly in older adults.

An easy way to stay in shape

Think strength training is too hard or too awkward for you? Think again. The fact is, strength training is often less tiring than endurance workouts.

  • It can be done in limited space and limited time.
  • You need minimal gear — often just a few dumbbells.
  • Best of all, you'll see the results in as little as a few weeks.

Losing weight with strengthening exercises

Strengthening exercises can boost metabolism as much as 15 percent, which is a bonus when it comes to losing weight. Maybe that's why more than ever, people 65 and older are taking up strength training.

  • But let's get rid of one exercise myth right now: Muscle does not weigh more than fat. However, 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of muscle takes up less space in your body than 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of fat, just as 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of lean beef takes up less space than 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of shortening.
  • Muscle is denser than fat, not heavier. That's why you can be working out and seeing your measurements change, but your weight remains the same.
  • The same weight is simply taking up less space. In fact, some experts estimate that the space used by 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of muscle is 22 percent less than the space used by 0.5 kilograms (1 pound) of fat.

Available to any age, muscle training is an inexpensive and easy way to get healthy. Keep these tips in mind and give it a try today!

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
Close menu