Posted On:   |   Last Updated:   |   Posted in

Strength Training Benefits Part 2: 6 Healthy Gains for Your Human Body

seniors strength training benefits

Before we talk about strength training benefits. There are a lot of misconceptions about strength training that need to be disclosed, and most of them have to do with what people assume strength training actually does to your body.

Unless you’re a bodybuilder, strength training exercises from weight lifting to bodyweight movements like squats, push-ups, and planks will not make you bulk up, but they will offer a slew of other benefits — both physically, and mentally.

I’m pretty sure most of us know that strength training increases our strength and muscle mass, but how exactly do they carry over into our daily lives? Westcott (2012) reported on the physical benefits of resistance training, all of which are summarized in this blog.

Here are a few examples of strength training benefits that affect your physical body.

Strength Training Benefits #1: Reduced Muscle Loss (Sarcopenia)

Sarcopenia, the progressive loss of muscle mass and strength as one ages (Cruz-Jentoft et al., 2010), can reduce our quality of life as we become more prone to fractures from falls (Roh et al., 2017), and we lose strength to perform certain daily tasks (e.g., increased risks of dropping cups, difficulty carrying groceries).

Seems scary right? But fret not because resistance training of any form has been the most effective tool in alleviating the devastating impacts of sarcopenia (Chen et al., 2021)

Strength Training Benefits #2: Increase Resting Energy Expenditure

Pontzer et al. (2021) found that our metabolism doesn’t actually change much as we age – it remains stable from our 20s to 60s when it starts declining. The culprit that reduces our metabolism is sarcopenia, as we have less muscles our tissue metabolism decreases.

The solution as you might’ve guessed it would be strength training. It has 2 substantial effects on our metabolism – chronically, the increase in muscle mass maintains or increases our metabolism as we age which reduces our risks of obesity-related diseases (Strasser & Schobersberger, 2011), and it also has acute effects as more energy is needed to repair tissue microtraumas from strength training (Heden et al., 2011).

Strength Training Benefits #3: Increase Capabilities to Perform Activities of Daily Living

Inactivity is common amongst ageing individuals which leads to deficits in motor skills and reaction time (Seidler et al., 2010). Our simple tasks thus turn into pain-stakingly difficult tasks (e.g., walking from place to place). Thankfully, strength training helps alleviate these deficits as movement control, functional abilities, and physical performance are enhanced through it (Kalapotharakos et al., 2005).

Strength Training Benefits #4: Reduced Risks of Cardiovascular Diseases

With an increase in insulin resistance and glycemic control as muscle mass increases (Phillips & Winett, 2010), risk of type-2 diabetes reduces. Resting blood pressure also dips after strength training interventions which makes it as effective as aerobic training interventions (Kelley & Kelley, 2000). LDL cholesterol, commonly referred to as “bad” cholesterol, is also reduced after strength training which reduces one’s risk of cardiovascular disease (Tambalis et al., 2009).

Strength Training Benefits #5: Reduced risk of Osteoporosis

Osteopenia, bone loss, is prevalent in inactive, ageing individuals as well as premenopausal and postmenopausal women which increases risks of fractures. Strength training is the single most effective tool in combating osteopenia for both youths and adults regardless of gender (Layne & Nelson, 1999).

Strength Training Benefits #6: Pain Alleviation

Substantial amounts of evidence have been found which appropriate strength training with reductions in lower back pain (Hayden et al., 2005), arthritic discomfort (Lange et al., 2008) and fibromyalgia (Andrade et al., 2018).

We can already see the vast amount of benefits strength training gives us. Not only do we feel direct mental and physical effects from exercise, but these effects stretch long into the future as we spend less on medical bills for pain and health issues. Our socio-economic lives will be enriched and improved which makes our lives more fulfilling. And that’s what we want, don’t we? To live a life that’s meaningful to us.

 


Our personal training allows you to meet your lifestyle needs and is flexible to fit into your busy schedule. Feel free to contact us for details.


References

Andrade, A., de Azevedo Klumb Steffens, R., Sieczkowska, S. M., Peyré Tartaruga, L. A., & Torres Vilarino, G. (2018). A systematic review of the effects of strength training in patients with fibromyalgia: Clinical outcomes and design considerations. Advances in Rheumatology, 58(1), 36. https://doi.org/10.1186/s42358-018-0033-9

Chen, N., He, X., Feng, Y., Ainsworth, B. E., & Liu, Y. (2021). Effects of resistance training in healthy older people with sarcopenia: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. European Review of Aging and Physical Activity, 18(1), 23. https://doi.org/10.1186/s11556-021-00277-7

Cruz-Jentoft, A. J., Baeyens, J. P., Bauer, J. M., Boirie, Y., Cederholm, T., Landi, F., Martin, F. C., Michel, J.-P., Rolland, Y., Schneider, S. M., Topinkova, E., Vandewoude, M., & Zamboni, M. (2010). Sarcopenia: European consensus on definition and diagnosis: report of the european working group on sarcopenia in older people. Age and Ageing, 39(4), 412–423. https://doi.org/10.1093/ageing/afq034

Hayden, J. A., van Tulder, M. W., & Tomlinson, G. (2005). Systematic review: Strategies for using exercise therapy to improve outcomes in chronic low back pain. Annals of Internal Medicine, 142(9), 776. https://doi.org/10.7326/0003-4819-142-9-200505030-00014

Heden, T., Lox, C., Rose, P., Reid, S., & Kirk, E. P. (2011). One-set resistance training elevates energy expenditure for 72 h similar to three sets. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 111(3), 477–484. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00421-010-1666-5

Kalapotharakos, V. I., Michalopoulos, M., Tokmakidis, S. P., Godolias, G., & Gourgoulis, V. (2005). Effects of a heavy and a moderate resistance training on functional performance in older adults. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 19(3), 652. https://doi.org/10.1519/15284.1

Kelley, G. A., & Kelley, K. S. (2000). Progressive resistance exercise and resting blood pressure: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Hypertension, 35(3), 838–843. https://doi.org/10.1161/01.HYP.35.3.838

Lange, A. K., Vanwanseele, B., & Fiatarone singh, M. A. (2008). Strength training for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee: A systematic review. Arthritis & Rheumatism, 59(10), 1488–1494. https://doi.org/10.1002/art.24118

Layne, J. E., & Nelson, M. E. (1999). The effects of progressive resistance training on bone density: A review: Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 31(1), 25–30. https://doi.org/10.1097/00005768-199901000-00006

Phillips, S. M., & Winett, R. A. (2010). Uncomplicated resistance training and health-related outcomes: Evidence for a public health mandate. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 9(4), 208–213. https://doi.org/10.1249/JSR.0b013e3181e7da73

Pontzer, H., Yamada, Y., Sagayama, H., Ainslie, P. N., Andersen, L. F., Anderson, L. J., Arab, L., Baddou, I., Bedu-Addo, K., Blaak, E. E., Blanc, S., Bonomi, A. G., Bouten, C. V. C., Bovet, P., Buchowski, M. S., Butte, N. F., Camps, S. G., Close, G. L., Cooper, J. A., … IAEA DLW Database Consortium§. (2021). Daily energy expenditure through the human life course. Science, 373(6556), 808–812. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abe5017

Roh, Y. H., Koh, Y. D., Noh, J. H., Gong, H. S., & Baek, G. H. (2017). Evaluation of sarcopenia in patients with distal radius fractures. Archives of Osteoporosis, 12(1), 5. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11657-016-0303-2

Seidler, R. D., Bernard, J. A., Burutolu, T. B., Fling, B. W., Gordon, M. T., Gwin, J. T., Kwak, Y., & Lipps, D. B. (2010). Motor control and aging: Links to age-related brain structural, functional, and biochemical effects. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 34(5), 721–733. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neubiorev.2009.10.005

Shanahan, M. J. (2000). Pathways to adulthood in changing societies: Variability and mechanisms in life course perspective. Annual Review of Sociology, 26(1), 667–692. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.soc.26.1.667

Strasser, B., & Schobersberger, W. (2011). Evidence for resistance training as a treatment therapy in obesity. Journal of Obesity, 2011, 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1155/2011/482564

Tambalis, K., Panagiotakos, D. B., Kavouras, S. A., & Sidossis, L. S. (2009). Responses of blood lipids to aerobic, resistance, and combined aerobic with resistance exercise training: A systematic review of current evidence. Angiology, 60(5), 614–632. https://doi.org/10.1177/0003319708324927

Westcott, W. L. (2012). Resistance training is medicine: Effects of strength training on health. Current Sports Medicine Reports, 11(4), 209–216. https://doi.org/10.1249/JSR.0b013e31825dabb8