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Strength Changes Everything

Feb 1, 2023

Join us for this replay from the archives and learn more about preventing the ill effects of aging...


Is it safe for seniors to perform high intensity strength training? The question is actually “is it safe for them not to?” Brian Cygan and Amy Hudson discuss the science behind strength training and why high intensity, whole effort exercise is one of the best ways to prevent the ill effects of aging, even if you are afraid of your joint pain or heart issues holding you back.

  • A number of people are curious whether strength training is an appropriate exercise for them, especially as they get older. But the real question we should be asking is whether it’s safe for seniors to avoid strength training.
  • The science indicates that there are a number of mortality benefits associated with strength training, and individuals who don’t engage in strength training over the long term are at a higher risk of premature death.
  • For people in their 60’s, strength training has cognitive benefits, blood pressure and blood sugar benefits, and even bone density benefits.
  • There are two levels of safety at the Exercise Coach, orthopedic safety and cardiovascular safety. Researchers have concluded that high intensity strength training, when done correctly, is safe for people into their 90’s. The benefits of performing strength training outweigh the risks of not doing so.
  • Even older people with osteoporosis can benefit from strength training.
  • High intensity strength training is safe and addresses directly the most important markers of healthy aging. From a cardiovascular standpoint, high intensity strength training has a positive influence on resting blood pressure. It’s common for Exercise Coach clients with high blood pressure to see their blood pressure normalize.
  • Another study compared the impact of strength training versus traditional cardio in cardiovascular rehab. A large proportion of the people performing the cardio exercise as part of their rehabilitation experienced some kind of angina or chest pain, whereas the people in the strength training didn’t experience any.
  • The slow and controlled nature of the exercises performed at the Exercise Coach is the key to making them safe for anyone to do. It’s possible to increase the intensity of the exercise without increasing undue stress on your joints or your bones with this method.
  • The environment of the Exercise Coach is about as good as it gets from a Covid-19 perspective since it offers private sessions in a studio with a small number of people.
  • Sarcopenia is the age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass and is really the root of a number of issues related to aging. It’s similar to the effects of muscle atrophy after an injury, and is linked to a number of the diseases of aging that we are most concerned about.
  • The most effective way to combat sarcopenia is to engage in a meaningful strength training program. The data shows that whole effort exercise can reverse decades of muscle loss in a matter of 10 to 12 weeks.
  • The more deconditioned somebody is when they start, the more profound the results they will see in a short period of time.





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