The Benefits of Strength Training

INJURY PREVENTION

Strong and well conditioned muscles act as shock absorbers and decrease the force that goes through the joints when exercising, they also act as important balancing agents throughout our body. When muscles are strong they help to reduce the repetitive strain that occurs during running or playing football, rugby or basketball. One of the reasons that middle and long distance runners get knee and hip problems is because they neglect their strength training and have muscle imbalances between quadriceps, hamstrings, hip flexors and calves.

AVOID MUSCLE LOSS

Adults who do not strength train lose between 1-2 pounds of muscle every year. Endurance exercise like running, cycling and rowing improves our cardiovascular fitness, but does not prevent the loss of muscle tissue. Only strength exercise maintains our muscle mass and strength throughout our mid-life years.

INCREASE METABOLIC RATE AND REDUCE BODY FAT

Replacing fat with muscle increases our resting metabolic rate (using more calories all day long and reducing the likelihood of fat accumulation.). During research it was found that strength exercise produced 4 pounds of fat loss after 3 months of training, even though the subjects were eating 15 percent more calories per day. A basic strength training program can result in 3 pounds more lean weight and 4 pounds less fat in 12 weeks.

INCREASE BONE DENSITY

The effects of strength exercise are similar for muscle tissue and bone tissue. The same training stimulus that increases muscle density also increases bone density and mineral content. Scientists have demonstrated significant increases in the bone mineral density after 4 months of strength exercise.

REDUCE ARTHRITIC PAIN

Regular strength training eases the pain of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Many men and women who suffer from arthritis pain need strength exercise to develop stronger muscles, bones, and connective tissue and to reduce the stress put through the joints even during daily activity.