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Strength Training Increases Longevity According to Study

By Rick Cohen, 9:00 am on

It’s no secret that some form of regular exercise may help seniors manage chronic conditions like arthritis and low back pain and reduce the risk of developing conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. When it comes to boosting longevity, however, the key to living longer for older adults may be adding twice-weekly strength training to their regular exercise routine, at least according to recent research.

Confirming Strengthen Training Benefits

As with regular exercise, strength training may help control weight and manage chronic conditions like LBP. Researchers in New York and Pennsylvania also noted an improvement with muscle mass, a particular concern for seniors who naturally lose bone density with age. Other studies read by Milwaukee senior home care professionals have associated increased muscle strength with a reduced mortality risk.

Fine-Tuning Strength Training Recommendations

From improving balance to encouraging more productive sleep patterns, the benefits for strength training have been well documented. This new study is significant because it fine-tunes recommendations for older adults to include at least two days of strength training per week, with recommendations for seniors including:

  • 2-3 non-consecutive days of strength training per week
  • 10-15 repetitions per set for each strength training exercise 
  • 8-10 strength training exercises targeting major muscle groups in the chest, shoulders, back, shoulders, legs, and core.

Reduced Risk of Disease-Related Death

The study, which looked at the mortality effects of strength training on approximately 30,000 adults 65 and older over a five-year period, suggests a nearly 50 percent reduction in mortality rates for those who strength trained twice weekly. Strength-training seniors observed also had a reduced risk of death from heart disease and cancer.

Just under 10 percent of those surveyed strength trained on a regular basis, suggesting a need for doctors to encourage older patients to add such exercises to their fitness routine. Strength training routines can easily be modified based on ability.

While we are known for our trusted Milwaukee dementia care, our expertly trained caregivers can help seniors of all abilities with everyday tasks like exercise, healthy meal preparation, and personal care. To learn more about how our flexible care services can benefit your aging relative, give us a call at (262) 782-3383 and schedule a free in-home consultation.

Research Shows Strength Training Increases Longevity