If you can do just one thing to improve your health, then strength training must be at the top of the priority list. It requires the muscles of one or more groups for a specific job like lifting weights or lifting a weight or squatting.
14 Benefits of Strength Training
With the increasing amount of research that proves its numerous benefits, strengthening training is now a key component of many fitness programs. If you’ve considered strengthening your muscles, you could think about how it could improve your life.
This article discusses 14 advantages of training for strength.
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What is strength training?
Strength training is also referred to as resistance training, as well as muscular training.
The most common term “strength training” refers to any physical exercise that you perform using your body or other equipment (e.g. dumbbells, dumbbells, and the resistance band) to increase muscle mass as well as strength as well as endurance.
The most common kinds of strength training are.
Muscular hypertrophy. Also known as muscle building this kind of strength training makes use of heavy to moderate weights to encourage muscle growth.
Muscular endurance. It refers to your muscles’ capacity to hold a workout for a long period of time. Training to improve your endurance typically involves performing high reps with light weights or your own weight.
Circuit training. This type of full-body fitness, is a cycle of exercises, with no rest between each.
The maximum strength of the muscles. This type of exercise involves low repetitions (usually between 2 and 6) as well as heavy weights to increase your overall strength. It is recommended for skilled exercisers who know their technique.
Explosive power. This form of training mixes speed and power to boost your power output of yours. It is typically used by trained athletes to increase their ability to perform powerful movements in their sport.
A majority of people focus on muscle endurance, circuit-training as well as the development of muscular hypertrophy as an element of their training routine for strength while power and strength training is typically reserved for elite athletes.
Based on the kind of training for strength you decide to use to achieve the goals you want to achieve, you could employ a variety of equipment (or none altogether) for example:
The body weight: utilising your body weight and gravity’s force to perform a variety of movements (e.g. pushing ups or squats, planks lunges, pullups and more)
Weights that are free: equipment that is not tied on the floor, or machine, like kettlebells and barbells medicine balls, or things that are found around the house
Loop bands/resistance bands: rubber bands that offer resistance when stretched
The weight machines: machines that have adjustable weights or hydraulics that are attached to give resistance and stress to muscles
Suspension apparatus: comprises straps or ropes which are fixed to a strong point and a person utilizes the weight of their body and gravity to complete various exercises.
Whatever form of training for strength you do, the objective is to place your muscles in a state of tension in order to facilitate neuromuscular adaptations and increase the growth of muscles. Through regular training, the muscles will get stronger.
1. Makes you stronger
Training for strength helps you get more powerful.
Strengthening your body allows you to tackle everyday tasks with ease, for example, carrying heavy bags of groceries or playing with your children.
Additionally, it aids in improving performances in athletics that require power, speed and strength. it could even aid endurance athletes by maintaining the lean mass of their muscles.
2. Burns calories efficiently
Training for strength can help increase the metabolism in two different ways.
The first is that building muscle improves your metabolic rate. Muscles have higher metabolic efficiency than fat masses, which allows you to burn off more calories at sitting down.
Research has proven that your metabolic rate is elevated by up to 72 hours following exercises for strength. This means that you’re burning calories for hours or even days after you’ve completed your exercise.
3. Reduces abdominal fat
Fat that is stored in the abdomen and around the abdomen, particularly visceral fat is associated with the risk of having chronic illnesses, such as heart disease and nonalcoholic liver disease, fatty liver and type 2 diabetes and some types of cancer.
Numerous studies have proven the benefits of exercises for strength to reduce abdominal fat weight and body fat.
4. Can help you appear leaner
As you increase your muscle mass and shed weight, you’ll appear slimmer.
This is due to the fact that muscles are much more solid than fat so it occupies less of your body pound-for-pound. So, you can shed inches off your waist, even if there isn’t any change in the weight on the weight scale.
Additionally, losing body fat and creating stronger and bigger muscles will show more definition of the muscle making it appear stronger and leaner look.
5. Lowers your risk of falling
Strength training can reduce the chance of falling since you’ll be able to better support your body.
Indeed, one study that included 23,407 adults who were older than 60 revealed a reduction of 34% in falls for those who engaged in a comprehensive exercise program which included balance exercises as well as functional and resistance training.
It is good to know that many types of resistance training have been proven to be efficient like Tai Chi and weight training and bodyweight and resistance band exercises.
6. Reduces the chance of being injured
Incorporating strength training into your exercise routine could lower your chance of injuries.
Strength training can improve endurance, flexibility and flexibility of your ligaments, muscles and tendons. This will help build strength around joints of major importance like your hips, knees and ankles, providing extra protection from injury ( 1).
Furthermore, training for strength helps correct muscle imbalances. For instance, having a more powerful core, hamstrings and glutes eases the burden from your back when lifting, which reduces the chance of injuries to your lower back.
In addition, teenage and adult athletes who participate in training for strength are more likely to avoid injuries.
In reality, one study of 7,738 athletes revealed that training programs for strength reduced the risk of injury by 33 per cent. The study found that it reduced the risk of injuries in a dose-dependent fashion that is, for every 10 per cent increase in the amount of strength training it was associated with an increase of 4% in the risk of injury.
7. Improves the health of your heart
Numerous studies have proven that regular exercise in strength can reduce blood pressure, decrease LDL and total (bad) cholesterol levels, and increase blood flow by strengthening the blood vessels and the heart.
Training for strength can also assist you in maintaining your weight in a healthy way and regulating your blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels that are high are an important risk aspect for heart disease.
8. Helps manage your blood sugar levels
Training for strength can reduce the risk of developing diabetes, and could aid those suffering from the condition more effective in managing it.
Skeletal muscle aids in increasing the sensitivity of insulin. It also decreases blood sugar levels through the removal of glucose from the blood and transferring them to the muscle cells. In turn, greater muscles can aid in improving blood sugar control.
Training for strength can also lower the chance of developing type 2 diabetes. A study that followed 35,754 women over the course of a median of 10 years found a 30% lower chance of developing diabetes type 2 in people who took part in fitness training, compared to those who didn’t.
9. Facilitates greater mobility and flexibility
Contrary to what many people believe Strength training can help you become more flexible.
Strength training can increase the joint’s mobility (ROM) and allows to have greater flexibility and mobility. Additionally, those who have weaker muscles typically have less flexibility and ROM.
Actually, a study that compared stretching with strength training showed that they were equally effective in enhancing ROM.
To get the best results, make sure that you’re performing the entire ROM of an exercise or, in other words, make use of your entire movement potential in a joint. For example, you can lower yourself down into a squat and go to the extent you’re able without compromising your posture.
10. Increases self-esteem
Strength training can give you an enormous boost of confidence in yourself.
It assists you in overcoming obstacles, achieving an end goal, and recognising the strength of your body. Particularly, it helps improve your self-efficacy — the conviction that you’re competent enough to succeed in completing the task you’re assigned. This will greatly increase your confidence.
In reality, one study of seven studies on adolescents aged between 10 and 16 years found an important connection between training for strength and self-esteem, physical strength and self-esteem.
Furthermore, a systematic review of 754 adults found a strong connection between training for strength with an improved perception of body and body image, body satisfaction and social body anxiety (the perception of judgement from other people).
11. Makes your bones stronger
Training for strength is vital for bone growth.
The weight-bearing exercise puts a temporary strain on your bones, which sends the bone-building cells that they must act to strengthen bones. Strong bones lower the risk for osteoporosis fractures, fractures, as well as falls, particularly when you get older.
It is a good thing that you can reap the benefits of bone-strengthening training regardless of age.
12. It boosts your mood
Regular exercise can boost spirits and enhance mental well-being.
Numerous studies have proven that strengthening exercises can help reduce anxiety and improve your mood.
Strength training can bring many benefits to mood control that include increased self-esteem and self-efficacy. Furthermore, exercise can trigger the release of mood-enhancing endorphins which contribute to an optimistic mood.
13. Improves brain health
Anyone who is involved in strength training might improve cognitive health and protect against cognitive decline due to age.
Multiple studies on older adults have shown significant improvement in cognitive functioning (e.g. processing speed memory, executive performance) following participation in strength training, as compared to those who did not take part in it.
It is believed that resistance training can have many positive effects on the brain, including increased blood flow, less inflammation, as well as an increased expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which is related to learning and memory.
14. Enhances the quality of life
Training for strength could improve the quality of your life particularly as you get older.
Numerous studies have shown that fitness training with improved health and quality of life. Quality of life that is, a person’s perception of mental and physical well-being.
In actual fact, a review of 16 studies involving people aged 50 or older revealed a significant relationship between resistance training and improved mental health, physical performance and pain management, overall well-being and overall health.
Furthermore, strengthening exercises could improve the living quality of those who suffer from arthritis. A study review found that strength training significantly improved scores for physical function and pain.
Beginning by learning the fundamentals
If you’re just beginning your journey to training for the strength it is important to learn the basic movements first. This will help ensure that you’re doing exercises safely and efficiently.
It is possible, to begin with, exercises using body weights that target stability, balance and fundamental movement patterns (e.g. bent-and-lifting single-leg, pushing, pulling, and rotating actions).
This could be done with the bodyweight squat, single-leg stands and pushups. Forearm planks can also be done, the bird dog exercise and toe taps on planks.
Once you’re comfortable using the fundamental movement patterns Try adding additional forces (e.g. bands of resistance, weights and even machines). If you’re not sure how you can make use of the equipment correctly talk to an experienced physical therapist or personal trainer.
Select the appropriate quantity and load
The kind of exercise you select will be based on the fitness objectives you have, like the need to build muscles (hypertrophy) or enhance the endurance of your muscles.
For general strength and fitness, it is recommended to choose an appropriate weight that permits you to do 8-15 reps over 3 sets while maintaining your posture.
If you’re having trouble performing at least eight reps, or are unable to maintain your posture, the weight may not be suitable for you (except for advanced lifters who have goal-setting for strength). On the other hand, If you are able to complete 15 or more reps then you’re probably able to up the weight.
To build strength and muscle, it is important to test your muscles. This is known by the term Progressive overload and you must aim to increase your reps, weight or the number of sets as you get stronger.
Be careful not to overdo it
Although some soreness is common in the days or weeks following training for strength (also called delayed muscles soreness (DOMS) — you shouldn’t be suffering from pain or be in a position to carry out your normal routine.
It’s a myth that you should be sore following a workout to see outcomes. But, building muscle mass and strength is not related to muscle soreness.
Try to finish your sets before you reach failure, which means you are unable to physically complete additional sets. This will reduce the risk of DOMS and still be challenging enough for the muscles.
Last but not least, allow yourself the time to relax and let your muscles recover and develop. The majority of people will get the benefit of 2-3 training sessions for strength every week.
If you’ve never been a participant in strength training, now is the best time to get started.
Training for strength can provide a variety of health benefits, like an increased risk of diabetes and heart disease as well as stronger bones, improved mental health and mood and improved self-esteem.
The good news is that strength training isn’t only about lifting weights at the gym. You can do an excellent strength-training session using your own body weight as well as the resistance band, weights that are free or even objects that you have around your home.
If you’re new or have experience fitness is an option for everyone.