The Trainers Table: Why you need to strength train
During the past year I have had the chance to coach hundreds of athletes ranging from elementary age children right up through professional players. One of my favorite age groups to teach, though, is adult. Our adult clients have flourished from our comprehensive strength training philosophy. Now that the New Year is right around the corner, it is time to develop a bulletproof system to transform your life.
Why you need to strength train:
Strength training has come a long way in the past 20 years. Universities and other organizations spend thousands of dollars on exercise research to better understand how the body adapts to specific physical activities. While the needs for cardio exercises are important to improve the cardiovascular system, it lacks the ability to get you stronger. The results show that resistance training is a safe and effective way to improve several health-related benefits.
The major benefits include:
Proper weight maintenance: individuals with greater muscle mass have a higher metabolic rate. This provides your body with a bigger engine to burn more calories. Increasing your metabolic rate is extremely important for long term weight control.
Increase bone density:
resistance training provides a loading force on bone tissue which promotes new bone formation. In order to stimulate new bone growth you want to use a variety of exercises that load the axial spine (spine and hip) such as lunges or squats. The more intense structural loading should be done during early adulthood to develop peak bone density.
Increase muscle mass:
Muscle atrophy or loss of muscle, can be a major issue as you age. Muscle atrophy can happen starting at the age of 20. In most people, muscles atrophy occurs due to not using the muscles enough (if you don’t use it, you lose it). With a loss of muscle tone, simple tasks can become difficult. This type of atrophy can be reversed with exercise and better nutrition.
Improve posture and restore balance:
Posture plays a large role in an individual’s muscle balance. Sitting for a long period of time during the day can cause poor joint alignment which may lead to stiffness or pain. Giving your body the right exercises and movements to help counter these imbalances is key to improving posture.
Increase mental and emotional health:
when individuals partake in strength training programs, their confidence and self-esteem go up. This could be from a combination of feeling better, getting stronger, or looking better. Having a positive mental state can greatly increase the overall quality of life.
Practical strength training advice:
1. Set a goal, and create a plan: don’t go into the gym without a plan. Having the proper road map will lead you to the results you desire.
2. Quality over quantity: take time to learn correct exercise technique. Learning the proper techniques takes time and dedication. Make sure that all exercises are done with the correct mechanics
3. Keep the exercises functional and simple: there is no need to be standing on one leg on an exercise ball. Use multi joint exercises that are low risk such as farmer carries, goblet squats, split squats, and rows
4. Work hard: commit to your goals and hold yourself accountable. Seek a trainer if motivation is an issue. There is no supplement for effort.