Strength and Fitness - The Impartial Guide to strength, fitness, endurance and nutrition

Benefits Of Strength Training

  • Enhanced muscle strength - by working against a resistance you will increase muscle strength. This is not just important to athletic populations but is also of benefit to normal healthy individuals, aswel as individuals with specific conditions (MS, Parkinsons, arthritis), where it has been shown that improvements in strength can imrpove quality of life by making everday tasks easier. 
  • Improved muscle tone and size - following a period of 2-4 weeks of strength resistance training individuals will start to notice increased muscle tone and size. The extent of the increased muscle tone and size will be dependent on a number of factors including: intensity of training, sex (men tend to put on muscle more easily than women), training history, age. 
  • Improved muscular endurance - strength/resistance training has been shown to improve muscular endurance. This is of benefit for athletes looking to enhance fatigue resistance as well as individuals who will benefit from finding everyday tasks easier.
  • Increased metabolic rate - muscles are metabolically active tissue and as such when you increase muscle mass your body burns more calories. Even small increases in muscle mass can lead to significant increases in energy expenditure and help to reduce body fat. 
  • Increased bone density - when you undergo a strength training routine you place stress on your skeletal system which overtime leads to increased bone density and helps to reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Reduced risk of injury - strength training helps to improve stability through your joints which can help to reduce the risk of injury.
  • Maintenance of muscle mass in the elderly - it's known that as we age we start to lose muscle mass (0.5-1.0% per year) and can lead to significant reductions in the quality of life in the elderly. A number of studies have demonstrated that strength training can help to protect against the age related decline in muscle mass.
  • Other health benefits from strength training - some of the many other health benefits associated with resistance training include: reductions in resting blood pressure, prevention/management of type II diabetes, improved insulin sensitivity, decreased LDL cholesterol & triglycerides, enhanced mental function & reduced lower back pain.