Exercise. We all have heard of it, we all know it’s beneficial for our health. Whether you’re a fan of gyms & studios, walking outside or playing organized sports we all need movement and activity in our lives. Movement and motion are what our bodies are made to do. Without the daily movements and rhythms of our lives.
Specifically, strength training is more than big muscles and heavy weights. Strength training is crucial for longevity, bone health, metabolism, mental health, and cardiovascular health. As a doctor of physical therapy for Inside Out Strength and Performance I have the opportunity to work with individuals of all ages and restore movement and strength into people’s lives, sometimes for the very first time in a long time!
According to the Department of Health and Human Services and American College of Sports Medicine, exercise guidelines for substantial health benefits for adults and older adults are as follows:
– At least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity
-At least two days a week of muscle-strengthening activity.
150 minutes a week?! That’s 30 minutes a day for 5 days out of the week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity. What does that look like tangibly? By using the Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) Scale we can aim for a 4-6 on the scale from 1-10.
Examples of moderate-intensity aerobic activity include brisk walking, lawn mowing, stationary bike.
The recommendations also recommend 2 days of muscle-strengthening activity. This may include bodyweight exercises, resistance training with bands or weights.
Below are 4 key exercises to include in your muscle-strengthening days for optimizing your strength, function and stamina for daily activities.
- Glute Bridge
Glute Bridge Video
Pelvis in neutral, engage deep abdominals, squeeze glutes and lift hips. Exhale with the hip lift.
**Progression: Glute Bridge hold (:30-60sec) adding a resistance band above knees to engage more hip musculature.
- Sit to Stand 3 sets x 5 reps
**To progress you can hold dumbbells for added resistance.
**Challenge yourself by changing up the tempo of the exercise. For example, go from sit to stand in 1-2 seconds and on the way down to sitting control the descent for 5 seconds!
- Elastic Band Row Video 3 sets x 15 reps
4. Core Strength Videos
Video Deep Core Brace with Mini March 3 sets x 20 reps
Video Core Brace with Bent Knee Fall Out 3 sets x 20 reps *Add a resistance band above the knees for progression.
Video Dead Bug 3 sets x 20 reps
The goal is to focus on full-body movements versus isolated muscle movements. Remember the repetitions and sets are recommendations or goals to work up to. Especially when it comes to strength training the quality of the repetition is safer, smarter and more important than rushing through to reach a number of reps. If you have a history of pain or experience symptoms of discomfort during your exercise programming please reach out to a trusted health care provider such as a physical therapist because they are movement experts and can guide you in a direction of safe strength training to optimize your results. Keep strong and keep moving friends, remember we were born for movement!
*Disclaimer: These exercises are recommendations and not personalized medical advice. If you are recently trying a new exercise program, please contact your doctor to ensure safety and follow up.
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