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5 Key Benefits of Resistance Training

Did you know that currently the Australian physical activity guidelines recommend at least 2 days per week of resistance training in conjunction with cardiovascular exercise?

The days of worrying that resistance training will make you bulky and is only for body builders are gone. The benefits are now well known and a resistance training program now forms part of a healthy balanced lifestyle. There are a variety of different forms of resistance training, many of which do not need a gym and can be completed at home depending on your overall goals.

Resistance training or (strength training) has been shown to have many health benefits. Here are just a few.

1. Increase metabolic rate

Metabolic rate is the amount of energy your body uses at rest. The importance of metabolic rate is often underestimated. Resistance training improves your metabolic rate by increasing lean muscle mass which increases your body’s resting energy consumption. The philosophy here is simple, if you increase the amount of energy you burn at rest (metabolic rate) you have a greater ability to burn off fats and carbohydrates.

2. Diabetes prevention and control

Diabetes (Type 2) is an increased blood sugar concentration and as such your body is no longer absorbing glucose due the body no longer being able to move this sugar from the blood stream into muscle or storage areas. However, glucose is also an important fuel source for muscle as when you are exercising the body sends glucose into your muscles. This decreases the glucose saturation in your blood. Resistance training has been shown to assist with the management of blood sugar levels and is recommended in the management of type 2 diabetes.

3. Pain reduction in Osteoarthritis (OA)

Osteoarthritis is a common condition, with 2.1 million Australians having some form of Osteoarthritis (OA) which can often cause pain and disability. Unfortunately, there is no cure for OA, however there are proven ways to assist with the pain. Exercise therapy has been shown to be the best treatment for Osteoarthritis, and can reduce the amount of medications needed for management of the condition. Specifically, resistance training will benefit Osteoarthritis in the following ways:

*Enhances strength which may reduce the internal forces on the joint and improves pain and physical function.

*Increases muscular strength which may modify biomechanics (the way the body moves) resulting in decreased joint loading or decreased stress in the cartilage which can delay the progression of the condition.

*Improved fitness that may enhance quality of life by allowing a person to perform daily tasks and therefore improving physical function

4. Improved Mental Health

There is a growing amount of evidence that shows resistance training can assist with various mental conditions. Resistance training is proposed to directly and indirectly effect metal processes through a complex network of brain adaptions that effect mental processes. The Specific benefits include:

Improved memory

Improved executive control

May lessen depression

Improved quality of sleep

Improved cognition

Reduced anxiety

Improved self-esteem

5. Prevention of heart disease

Decreased physical activity and aging can result in a reduced muscle mass which in turn has metabolic affects that can lead to a high prevalence of obesity, type 2 diabetes, increased cholesterol and high blood pressure. These risk factors are associated with structural changes to the heart and arteries which contribute greatly to heart disease. As previously mentioned, resistance training can improve metabolism through increasing muscle mass and therefore contributing to a decreased risk of heart disease.

We have a team of allied health professionals that are qualified and experienced in providing advice around resistance training so we can help you to get started. We have a variety or services and programs on offer that will all help you to be the best version of yourself in 2018 and our clients are certainly enjoying the benefits that resistance training in our new purpose built exercise area is providing. If any of the above information resonated with you, then get in touch to find out how we can help you begin to incorporate a resistance training program into your lifestyle. It is easier than you think and we would love to show you how.

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