Strength training is important for individuals of all ages and abilities.
Firstly, consistent and regular strength training helps to increase lean muscle mass and improve our body composition. Not only does this help to reduce the risk of developing age related sarcopenia, it can also help to maintain a level of independence we often take for granted.
Strength training also helps to improve our metabolic system. This helps to reduce the risk of developing insulin resistance and Diabetic conditions. Strength training also promotes a healthy body weight. When we have more lean muscle, we have a higher metabolic rate meaning our body is using more calories at rest compared to somebody who has less lean mass.
Regular exercise and strength training also helps to improve bone mineral density and skeletal health. Individuals who do not complete strength or resistance based exercise are at an increased risk of developing fractures and osteoporosis. This can have a terrible impact on quality of life later down the track as it can lead to other serious health issues. By slowly and progressively loading our bones, muscles, joints and tendons, we are reducing the risk of fracture and osteoporosis.
Strength training also helps to improve balance and reduce the risk of falls. Strength training helps to create a great base of support and a sense of stability through our ankles, knees, hips, and through our core. This will helps us to be less fearful about walking up stairs without a rail or completing everyday activities at home.
If you are not currently completing a form of strength training, it’s important that you start now. If you are new to exercise, consider talking to an exercise professional such as an Exercise Physiologist. They can help you develop an exercise program that is specific and appropriate to your needs. It is important to start slowly and check in with your exercise professional regularly. From there, consistency is key! Aim to accumulate at least 150 minutes of exercise per week, and? you will be on the right track!