People usually think that strength training is only good for athletes, but strength training is important for everyone – including seniors!
Power is the ability to produce power quickly, which is not the same as power – although there is a connection between power and power. Using strength-specific training in conjunction with strength training is key to building strength.
The reason strength is important is that in sports, and in life in general, things often move quickly. So if you are not able to act quickly, bad things can happen.
For example, if you step on an unstable surface and become unbalanced, your ability to adapt quickly is key to avoiding a fall. Another example is if you are crossing a road and the driver is texting and drifting over the yellow line and coming right at you! Your ability to move quickly can literally mean the difference between life and death.
Plus, as you age, you lose muscle fibers that contract quickly — the fibers that produce explosive power, which is why strength training is very important for older adults!
What is strength training?
Strength training is about fast movements with a load, and there are many different ways to achieve this. The most famous are the Olympic lifts with dumbbells, such as the clean, high pull and snatch.
While these exercises are certainly effective for strength development, they also have some significant drawbacks, including:
1. Done incorrectly, they have a very high injury potential.
2. A good execution takes a lot of practice with a good coach who is trained in coaching these movements.
3. They require a high degree of mobility that many people lack.
4. They take up a lot of space.
Practical strength training exercises
The good news is that there are many strength exercises that don’t require a high degree of skill or mobility and have a much lower risk of injury, including:
1. One-armed dumbbell cleans and grabs away – because one arm is involved, the movement is much easier to learn and requires much less shoulder mobility. In addition, if you have a problem, it is easy to drop the barbell to the side, unlike a barbell.
2. medicine ball throws – are super easy to learn and because the ball is padded there isn’t much risk. There are many different options available, from wall-ball throws (overhand, underhand, sideways, etc.). Watch this excellent how-to video from Mike Boyle to learn the one-armed barbell grip and some important medicine ball exercises: https://youtu.be/NpE1ZtbZQpQ
3. Ultimate sandbag cleans and snatch – the ultimate sandbag offers several highly effective functional strength exercises that can be performed safely, including cleanses and snatches. The advantage of using this bag is that it really changes stability so you can use less resistance but get more functional benefit from the exercises without high injury risk. Watch this video to get an idea of all the benefits of this great functional power development product: https://youtu.be/HudvmspdyBU
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