Look and feel better by doing exercises that use your body’s resistance and increase your strength. Some exercises that are good resistance builders are:
Lie on your back and bend your knees. Place your hands behind your head, or across your chest. Then pull your belly button in towards your spine. Slowly, bring your shoulder blades a short distance off the floor. You should feel a pull in your abdominal muscles.
Make sure you are keeping your neck straight as you rise. Hold the position for a few seconds, breathing deeply. Then slowly lower yourself back towards the floor, but don’t relax.
It is best to do this exercise slowly to get all the muscle benefits, and to ensure you keep the right form. The wrong form will not benefit you, and may even injure you.
Start off standing up straight. Simply bring one foot forward, until your leg is at a 90 degree angle. Keep your back knee parallel to the ground and do not bring the front knee any further than your toes.
Lift your front leg back to the starting position, after holding for a few seconds. You should feel the pull in your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calves. Make sure you are working each leg out equal amounts.
This exercise is one that many people try, and many people do wrong. The correct way to do a pushup is from all fours, with your hands placed slightly wider than your shoulder width. Next, straighten your arms and legs. Make sure you are not arching your back or caving it in.
Then, lower your body until your chest almost touches the floor, hold it, and then rise up again. Keep your back straight the whole time and move slowly. This is an exercise felt in the biceps, triceps, abdominals and glutes.
This is yet another popular strength training exercise that people do wrong. Remember that doing exercises wrong can result in injury. Place your feet about shoulder width apart. Next, tense your abs, look straight ahead and stand up straight. Then, very slowly, sit back and lower your butt backward.
Keep your knees in line with your toes the whole time, making sure they aren’t caving inwards. Make sure you aren’t rounding your back and keeping your eyes straight ahead. This exercise will strengthen your legs, glutes and lower body.
The Benefits of Strength Training
This is just a handful of exercises to get you started. The benefits are manifold, and research has shown that just two or three 20 minute strength training sessions per week can improve your health. Some of the ways it will help are:
More muscle mass
As people age, muscle mass naturally decreases. This is linked to the development of geriatric-related conditions. If you regularly do strength training, you can improve your health right into old age.
Regular strength training will increase your bone density and make you less likely to break a bone.
Better joint flexibility
Improve those aches and pains of living wear and tear with strength training. Joint supplements can also go a long way to supporting healthy joints.
Obesity comes with a lot of associated health risks. Weight training increases your muscle mass and reduces your body fat percentage, giving you the healthiest body composition.
Strength exercises increase flexibility and improve balance, making you less likely to fall over.