Excellent Training Methods That Seniors Can Use To Build Strength
Physical activity becomes more necessary as you age. Over time, muscles naturally become weaker and less flexible, leading to a decrease in strength, balance, and mobility.
Even with these challenges, seniors can do plenty of exercises to stay active and build strength. Try some of these routines that are perfect for helping you remain strong and healthy.
Plyometric training is a type of workout that involves explosive movements, such as jumping and hopping. What is plyometric training beneficial for? Mature folks can use these exercises to build strength quickly. The routines are especially helpful if you want to improve balance and agility to prevent dangerous falls.
Examples of plyometric exercises include jump squats, lateral bounds, box jumps, and burpees. Since these activities require vigorous movement, be sure to do them in a safe space with a partner when you first start. Always talk to your physician before trying any new workout regimen.
Weight or Resistance Band Training
Many strength training exercises involve using weights or resistance bands to build muscle mass. Such activities are ideal for seniors because they help you maintain strong bones and muscles while improving coordination and balance. Examples include bicep curls, tricep extensions, chest presses, rows, shoulder presses, lateral raises, squats, lunges, ab crunches, planks, and leg lifts. Only use sizes of weights you are comfortable with and build gradually.
Resistance bands are excellent because you don’t have to worry about picking up or dropping a heavy weight. Bands are also very portable. Not only do they offer a versatile and affordable alternative to traditional weights, but you can also easily adjust them for different levels of resistance.
With resistance bands, you can work specific muscle groups in the same way that barbells or dumbbells would by performing similar movements. They also allow for functional strength gains as well as improved coordination.
Low-impact aerobics is an excellent method for you to get the cardiovascular benefits of exercise without putting excess strain on your joints. Examples include walking, jogging, using an elliptical machine, swimming, biking, taking dance classes, playing sports, or even participating in water aerobics classes at a local pool or gym.
Pilates is an excellent low-impact aerobic option for seniors. The movements target core muscles, such as the stomach, back, and hips. Over time, you will improve flexibility, balance, coordination, posture, strength, and endurance. The routines require slow, controlled motions, making them accessible for people of all ages.
Wall pushups are a great alternative to traditional pushups because they don’t put as much strain on your wrists or elbows as regular pushups. To do wall pushups:
- Stand facing away from a wall with your hands shoulder-width apart and arms straight out in front of you at chest level.
- Bend your elbows until your forehead touches the wall before pushing back up again into starting position.
- Repeat this movement as many times as you can.
Wall pushups are a safe way to train that you shouldn’t forget!
Leg presses help you build strength without putting too much strain on joints or muscles. Leg press machines allow you to sit down and push the weight away from the body with your legs instead of lifting it off the ground like with traditional squats or deadlifts. This movement is often more comfortable if you cannot lift heavy weights due to joint pain or instability. You can get the benefits of building lower body strength without the danger.
Chair squats are another excellent way to build lower body strength if you have limited mobility or balance issues. To do chair squats, sit in a seat with your feet flat on the floor about hip-width apart. Slowly stand up and focus on your legs while keeping your torso upright throughout the entire movement. Then sit back down again slowly and repeat.
Exercise is essential for maintaining good physical health as you age. Fortunately, you can do various activities to strengthen your muscles without straining your joints or compromising your balance. Talk to your physician about giving some of the preceding activities a try, knowing you’re making the best choices for your body.