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  • Writer's pictureKaye Cheong

Why We should All Do Resistance Training by Bernadette Emuang

What is resistance training?

Resistance training is a form of exercise that involves the performance of exercises against a form of resistance. These forms of resistance include

  • Your own bodyweight

  • Free weights

  • Resistance bands

  • Weight machines.

What is the purpose of resistance training?

The primary purpose of resistance training is to build strength in the body, primarily in muscles but secondarily in terms of bone, tendons and other soft tissues.

When resistance exercises are performed, physiological changes occur. Change in size, definition and endurance of muscle indicate this.

The amount of physiological change is determined by the volume, frequency and intensity of training.

Resistance training is also known as strength training, and 5 key principles help achieve its purpose of building strength.

  1. Specificity - Training in a way specific to your goals. For example, if you want big biceps, you’ll have to do some bicep curls!

  2. Individualisation - Training differs according to individual

  3. Progressive Overload - Training intensity must increase over time in order for strength to continue to improve

  4. Variation - Variations in exercise help to increase strength gains by keeping things interesting and also training muscles in different ways

  5. Reversibility - This principle states that strength that is gained can be lost through inconsistency

What are the benefits of resistance training?

1) Resistance exercise training has profound effects on the musculoskeletal system!

Research has shown that resistance training contributes to the maintenance of functional abilities, and plays a role in preventing low back pain, sarcopenia, osteoporosis and more. (Winett and Carpinelli, 2001)

2) Resistance training is beneficial for all ages. In young adolescents, resistance training increases muscular strength and power, and may have a favorable influence on body composition and bone health, and a reduction of sports-related injuries. (Faigenbaum et al., 2010). In frail older adults, resistance training provides significant enhancements on muscle strength, muscle power, and overall function. (Lopez et al., 2018)

3) Resistance training is a great option for those with diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

A number of clinical studies have clearly demonstrated that resistance training increases glucose disposal, and improves cardiovascular disease risk profile in patients with type 2 diabetes. (American Journal of Physiology, 2011) This is backed up by another study that argues that resistance training reduces resting blood pressure and decreases low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides. (Wayne L. Westcott, 2012)

4) Resistance training produces psychological benefits in older persons.

The Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology (2007) revealed meaningful perceived improvements in psychological well-being in older persons who underwent a resistance training program.

5) Resistance training is good for your bones!

Resistance training may promote bone development, with studies showing 1% to 3% increase in bone mineral density. (Wayne L. Westcott, 2012).

With all these benefits, it would be ideal to implement some form of resistance training into your physical activity routine. Simple bodyweight resistance exercises include squats, lunges, planks and pushups. Not sure where to start? Planks are a good option as it is a simple but effective exercise that hits multiple muscle groups! Clinicians often prescribe it for individuals with low back pain. Ten second holds of 4-6 repetitions are great for beginners!

It is advised to consult a healthcare professional such as a chiropractor or physiotherapist before beginning any exercise routine. Send us an inquiry or schedule a consultation with us today!

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