Did you know that resistance training does much more than build strong muscles and bones? Research in the past few years has confirmed that lifting weights changes your metabolism in ways that improve health and well-being. That’s good news for people with type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and high cholesterol levels.
Noting that 1 in 5 Americans will be over 65 by 2030 and that skeletal mass, strength and functional loss represent health risks, the National Strength and Conditioning Association has released its first position stand on older-adult resistance training.
Here’s motivating news for older adults and those who train them. New research shows that older men, even in their 80s, can build muscle mass regardless of training background.
New research shows that the presence of a spotter during bench press training is enough to improve training performance by reducing perceived exertion and enhancing feelings of self-efficacy. Leeds Beckett University researchers from the Centre for Human Performance in Leeds, England, conducted the study to better understand why exercisers perform better in the presence of personal
trainers, coaches or training partners.
Fitness professionals know that resistance exercises are pivotal for maintaining and increasing muscle strength and mass as well as thwarting the negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle, particularly as we age. The National Strength and Conditioning Association recently addressed these issues in the organization’s first position stand on resistance training for older adults (ages 65 and older).
Older adults are more susceptible to deficits in cardiovascular fitness, muscle mass, strength and power, which may ultimately lead to losses in physical function. The following chair-based format focuses on improving outcomes for older participants, especially those who may need the support of a chair during exercise. Ready, Set, Sit! offers the variety of three 15-minute training segments (cardiovascular, high intensity and strength/power), while targeting important components that boost overall function.
In a study of midlife women in Singapore, weak upper- and lower-body strength was associated with depression and anxiety. Researchers analyzed data from 1,159 healthy women ages 45–69 for physical activity, physical performance, lifestyle choices, reproductive health, sociodemographic characteristics, and depression and anxiety symptoms. Weak handgrip strength and poor lower-body strength were associated with elevated symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. Fifteen percent of participants reported depression and/or anxiety.
No need for concern about increased death risk from heart disease among experienced middle-aged exercisers who engage in high-intensity activity, at least if they’re male. Findings from a 10-year study of 21,758 generally healthy, very active men—like marathon runners, cyclists and swimmers—showed that even for those with higher coronary-artery calcium levels, athletic pursuits did not elevate risk of death.
If you work with athletes, you’ve likely run into the challenge of how to incorporate power components into their already-packed training schedules. Whether you’re working with a clutch outfielder, a center or a lineman, your client’s athletic skills need refinement, and power is one aspect that requires attention. Trainers typically program resistance training to develop strength and plyometric drills to improve speed.
It’s been a banner 12 months for masters athletes.
Get a more inspired inbox
Unlock the latest industry research, tools and exclusive offers.
IDEA Fitness Journal