Resistance training, also known as resistance exercise, is any exercise that makes your muscles work harder than they would naturally. Whether you use free weights, a workout band or your own bodyweight, resistance training is beneficial for both health and fitness!
Resistance training, when done regularly, causes your muscles to grow through two mechanisms: increased muscle fiber recruitment and hypertrophy (the addition of new muscle cells).
Resistance training is any exercise that uses weights, such as dumbells, barbells, bodyweight, machines, powerbands or kettlebells. It has the benefit of increasing muscular strength, size and endurance within muscles and skeletal bones.
Resistance training offers numerous benefits, such as improved balance and stability, better overall health, reduced risks of falls and fractures, and an lowered likelihood of developing osteoporosis. Furthermore, it helps prevent muscle mass loss that ages us–sarcopenia–the medical term for when lean muscle begins to decline.
To maximize the advantages of resistance training, it’s essential to set an appropriate intensity and prioritize achieving your objectives. This is especially pertinent if you are trying to increase muscle mass, strength or endurance.
It is beneficial to give your muscles time to recover after each workout. That is why experts suggest training at least two non-consecutive days in a week.
To maximize your strength gains, it’s best to start out with a lower amount of weight and gradually increase it as you become stronger. That means starting off with eight repetitions (RM), then working up through 15-20 RM at a time until reaching 15-20 RM as an optimal range for strength growth over time.
Strength training programs should also incorporate exercises targeting each major muscle group, performed in sets of eight to 12 repetitions for healthy adults and 10 to 15 reps for older or frail individuals.
Improved Bone Density
One of the most efficient methods to increase bone density is through resistance training exercises such as squats, deadlifts, lunges and push-ups. These workouts help boost bone mineral density which in turn decreases fracture risks and osteoporosis risks.
Though the exact mechanisms causing these results remain elusive, exercise appears to stimulate bone physiology by increasing physical stresses on bones. This helps activate osteoblasts – cells responsible for depositing bone mass – which then leads to increased mineralization of those bones.
Researchers have demonstrated that high-intensity resistance training has significant effects on skeletal bone mass in elderly men and women. This is because resistance training applies various muscular loads to the bone, creating stimuli which promote an osteogenic response.
Resistance training not only builds muscle strength, but it can also reduce your risk for falls and fractures. Furthermore, it enhances independence as you age by helping maintain control over daily living tasks.
Many healthcare providers recommend exercising regularly to enhance your overall health and wellness. It’s essential to remember not to overexert yourself at once, as this won’t give your muscles enough time for recovery.
For optimal results, consult with a qualified health or exercise professional for guidance on the type of exercises to perform and the proper number of repetitions per set. Additionally, strive to exercise at least twice weekly for optimal results.
Reduced Risk of Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a condition in which your bones begin to thin due to decreased calcium and phosphorus levels in your body, weakening them over time.
Osteoporosis can lead to fractures, which can cause pain, loss of mobility and reduced quality of life. Fractures are most frequently found in the spine, hips and wrists.
Risk factors for osteoporosis include age, body size, ethnicity and family history. Women are more prone to developing this condition than men; individuals who have had fractures in the past also have an increased chance of developing the disorder.
Lifestyle factors can also increase your risk for osteoporosis. These include lack of physical activity, long-term bed rest or a diet low in calcium and vitamin D. Furthermore, certain medications may damage bones as well; therefore it’s best to discuss potential negative reactions with your doctor prior to beginning any medication regimen.
Exercise can help protect you against osteoporosis by strengthening muscles and correcting posture. It may also enhance balance, decreasing the likelihood of falling – an issue common to those with osteoporosis.
Resistance training is an efficient way to build muscle in your back, hips and knees. Before beginning a weight-training program, it’s wise to warm up first so your muscles are properly warmed up.
Start a weight-training regimen the right way by working with a certified personal trainer who can offer guidance and instruction on how to perform each exercise safely. It is also essential that you take an occasional break after each workout; this will allow your muscles time to cool down, making it less likely that you will sustain any injuries.
Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
Many people are unaware that weight-bearing exercise, or resistance training (RT), is a form of physical activity which may help lower the risk of heart disease. Not only does it build muscle strength and density in bones, but RT also lowers blood pressure and boosts cholesterol levels.
Recent studies suggest that lifting weights for less than an hour a week could significantly reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke by 40-70%. This effect is independent of how much aerobic activity you get each week, suggesting it could do wonders in improving overall health.
A recent study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise examined data from the Aerobics Center Longitudininal Study. Researchers analyzed information on nearly 13,000 adults who took part.
Dr. DC (Duck-chul) Lee, associate professor of kinesiology at Iowa State University, found that those who worked out with free weights or weight machines one to three times a week for up to 59 minutes experienced a 40 to 70% lower risk of heart disease compared to individuals who did no strength training. This finding is particularly noteworthy, she adds.
These findings are groundbreaking, as they demonstrate that resistance training can reduce cardiovascular disease risks even among those who do not meet recommended guidelines for aerobic activity.
Exercise with aerobic and resistance exercises can reduce the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity – all associated with an increased risk for heart disease and stroke. According to both American Heart Association and American College of Sports Medicine guidelines, adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week.
Improved Mental Health
Resistance training not only offers physical benefits, but it can also aid in improving mental wellbeing as well. This is because it increases endorphins in your body that make you feel better, boost your mood and even reduce symptoms of depression.
Studies and surveys consistently demonstrate the beneficial effects of exercises (particularly strength training) on mental health. Therefore, staying active is essential for maintaining both good mental and physical wellbeing.
A recent study has demonstrated that low to moderate intensity resistance training can significantly improve moods and make you more at ease. Analyzing 33 clinical trials, researchers discovered that people who regularly performed low to moderate intensity resistance training experienced fewer depressive symptoms than those who didn’t.
Research also revealed that high-intensity exercise routines weren’t as successful. This may be because such workouts put your body under more strain, potentially making it too challenging for some individuals to maintain consistent progress.
Therefore, it is essential to maintain a regular exercise program and choose the weight appropriate for your goals. Doing this will yield the most out of your time and energy invested.
Resistance training can have numerous health benefits, but it is still recommended to seek professional medical help if you experience any serious mental health issues. This is because depression is a serious disorder requiring constant monitoring and care.