While much of the talk about exercise these days seems to focus on cardio workouts, seniors should be careful not to leave quality strength training out of their regular workout schedules. Although strength training may not burn as many calories in as short of an amount of time as aerobic exercises do, it is a necessary choice for anyone who wants to age gracefully. Here are just a few of the many benefits of strength training for seniors.
It Is Good for the Muscles and Bones
Obviously, lifting weights or performing body-weight exercises, such as planks or squats, are good for building muscle strength and strong cores. However, regular strength training also decreases the loss of bone mass, reducing one’s risk of osteoporosis.
It Aids in a Healthy Weight
While aerobic exercises help burn calories now, strength training builds up muscles that burn calories even while the body is at rest. Research has shown that strength training boosts one’s resting metabolism.
It Improves Body Mechanics
As one ages, such things as posture, balance, and coordination often become difficult to maintain. Seniors may feel shaky on their feet, have upper or lower back pain, and increase their risk of falling. Strength training can help with each of these issues by strengthening the core and improving balance.
It Reduces Numerous Chronic Diseases
Strength training has been shown to help improve the symptoms of such diseases as arthritis, type 2 diabetes, and even depression.
It Improves Energy and Mood
Strength training often improves sleep quality, which can do much to boost one’s mood. However, it also increases endorphins, which improve mood and give good energy throughout the day.
It Can Be Done at Home
Many seniors struggle to get out daily. Others living in Apple Valley simply cannot deal with the hot, dry conditions of the desert for outdoor activities. Strength training is easily done with a few hand weights and a mat in one’s home.