Welcome to Naturally Good Health - Ireland's leading free natural health magazine

Strength in ageing

Age need not be a barrier to being fit and active, according to leading experts. In fact, DW Fitness First is keen to show that you can get stronger as you get older, and so has offered its advice on how you can stay fit, not to mention reduce your risk of age-related decline.

The gym explains that certain factors occur when we get older, including your metabolism slowing down, mobility decreasing, and muscle mass declining, but that there is much you can do to help yourself. Tips from DW Fitness First includes:

• Train the movement, not the muscles: Traditional resistance training methods have been used successfully to support weight loss, muscle growth and define and improve muscular strength, but did you know it also plays a part in slowing down age-related loss in muscle mass? Sarcopenia, the decline in muscle mass and function, starts to take effect when people reach their 50s and 60s. In short, resistance training with a variety of loads moving in different directions not only works to prevent muscle loss but improves overall strength and mobility as you get older.
Movements in activities of daily living: Activities of daily living (ADLs) refers to daily tasks you perform on a regular basis, whether it’s walking, performing housework or even gardening, ADLs are moments when you’re exercising without realising it. When you get older, these simple tasks become gradually more difficult if you neglect your fitness routine. By keeping on top of resistance training and varying workouts as you get older, you’re giving yourself the best chance at retaining your fitness levels.
Keep your workouts feeling fresh: Typically, too many people stick to what they know in terms of training, but this can be dangerous. Your goals in your 20s are unlikely to be the same in your 40s and 50s, when your body’s needs are changing. Fitness educator and Institute of Motion Founder, Michol Dalcourt, was the creator of ViPR. This is a whole-body training tool that combines traditional resistance work with full-body. And the good thing about wanting to keep fit and active as you get older is that you don’t have to go it alone; group exercise classes are a fantastic way to mix up your traditional training session and keep fit with like-minded gym-goers.