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  • Writer's pictureDave the physio

Is strength training REALLY good for you?

Updated: Mar 19, 2020

Strength training

I'm sure you've heard it all before... you need to exercise in order to get healthy. With the fitness market exploding with different type of exercises classes from aqua aerobics to crossfit classes it can get a little confusing as what you should be doing and why. This article is here to help you make the right choices and help you understand WHY you should exercise.

Why you should exercise

Not long ago, weight training was left to the body builders, Olympic weightlifters, and elite athletes. Now that more research has shed light on the seriousness of heart disease, diabetes and other health issues; doctors and health professionals now promote regular physical activity and exercise to combat this.

As we've become more sedentary in our lifestyle and the incidence of obesity has skyrocketed in the last 2 decades, more research has been given to age related muscle loss and what happens to the body.

Put simply:

Muscle loss --> reduced metabolic rate/metabolism --> fat gain--> increased risk factors of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

Research has shown that brief sessions (12 to 20 total exercise sets) of regular resistance training can increase muscle mass in adults of all ages. It has also been found to reverse some of the debilitating effects associated with inactive aging, even in elderly individuals such as improving bone mineral density and improving mental health (anxiety, depression all the way to cognition and brain function).

So what can you do?

Strength training is defined as "a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction, which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, size of skeletal muscles and bone density"

Put simply you can use any type of "resistance" to contract the muscle that you're targeting.

In my experience training clients over the last 10 years ANYTHING can be used to create resistance. If you like to train in the gym, use your body weight, do reformer Pilates... DO SOMETHING.

The most important thing is that you do the exercise with good alignment, use a safe weight relative to your strength and create a program where you will train CONSISTENTLY.

If you want a personalised exercise program speak to one of our health professionals today or book into one of our strength classes.

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