Strength Training for Seniors
You don’t have to be a fitness guru like Jack LaLanne to benefit from strength training –
and never say you are too old to work those muscles.
Strength training is just what older bodies, even very old or frail ones, need to fight the
loss of muscle mass and strength, according to the American Collage of Sports Medicine.
The ACSM believes that strength training is actually the most important exercise for those
older adults who aren’t fit, and that it should come before aerobic activity, not afterward,
as is typically done. Before one can walk, it is necessary to be able to get out of a chair
(requiring muscle power) and maintain an erect posture while moving though space
(requiring balance). For all older adults – not just the frail elderly – a regular program
of strengthening, combined with aerobic exercise can help reduce or prevent many functional
declines associated with growing older.
In the same way that taking a once-a-day vitamin is beneficial, lifting weights and other kind of
strength training provides multiple benefits, according to the findings of many studies over the
past several years. Here are the 10 top reasons to get started on a resistance strength training
1 . To build muscle strength. Adults lose between five and seven pounds of muscle every
decade after 20. Only strength training prevents muscle loss.
2. To improve functional strength and flexibility. This is important, since it can help keep you
safe in your daily activities and make you less vulnerable to falls or other injuries.
3. To increase bone mass and density. Weight-bearing and resistance exercises can help protect
against osteoporosis, a disease in which bones become fragile and more likely to break.
4. To lower body fat. Research in strength training has demonstrated a four-pound fat loss
after three months of training, even though study participants increased their daily caloric
intake by 15 Percent, according to the American Fitness Professionals Association.
5. Strength training reduces resting blood pressure.
6. To reduce low back pain. Research has shown that strength training can increase low back
strength and alleviate low back pain.
7. Sensible strength training can reduce the pain of osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis.
8. To reduce symptoms of other chromic diseases. Strength training has been found to help
reduce the symptoms of depression, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and sleep disorders.
9. To enhance your personal appearance. Improving your strength and your physique can also
be a plus for your self-confidence and self-esteem.
10. To improve your golf game. Believe it or not, strength training can improve golf performance
by increasing club head speed and driving power. It can also help enhance other physical acivities
such as tennis and cycling.