Strength training offers a number of benefits for women. Some women may worry that strength training will bulk them up and make them look less feminine, but with the correct techniques, women can retain their feminine physique while also deriving great health benefits from the strength training.
Health Benefits of Strength Training for Women
No matter how reluctant women may be to start up a strength training regimen, there is no denying the huge benefits reaped from this type of exercise. In addition to making women stronger and more physically fit, there are many health benefits associated with this type of exercise.
Potentially Increased Metabolism
Women who regularly engage in strength training may find that their metabolism increases to the point where they burn more calories on an everyday basis than they would otherwise. In other words, putting some effort into a strength training program means that women may burn more calories from merely sitting or going through their daily activities. One 2011 study showed the difference to be about 240 additional calories per day.
Additional Calorie Burning
One hour of moderate intensity strength training burns about 220 calories in addition to the potential increased metabolic benefits. This can prove a big help if you're trying to lose weight.
Less Chance of Injuries
Women who are dedicated to a strength training program may have fewer injuries than other women who do not engage in strength training at all. These exercises strengthen muscles, making them less susceptible to injuries.
More Bone Density
Perhaps one of the most important strength training benefits specific to women is that these exercises can actually increase bone density and lessen the chances of women later developing osteoporosis at an older age. Studies show strength training can actually restore lost bone density as well.
Any form of regular exercise can help decrease instances of illness and certain diseases, but strength training can help prevent some ailments that are particularly dangerous to women. For example, some experts state that regular strength training in women can help prevent heart diseases.
Improved Muscular Endurance
When you lift light weights at high repetitions, you also increase muscular endurance. This means your muscles can contract more times before reaching fatigue.
Increased Muscular Strength
It may seem obvious, but strength training also increases the strength of the muscle groups and supporting musculature. This allows you to perform daily activities with more ease.
Improved Body Mechanics
Strength training can give you better posture, balance, and coordination. These factors can decrease stress on your body.
Strength training can improve mood. It's also great at decreasing anxiety and tension, according to a 1998 study.
Help for Diabetes
One study showed that strength training increased insulin sensitivity in people with diabetes. This could lead to reduced diabetic symptoms.
Reduced Blood Pressure
A 2010 study showed that resistance exercise had a more significant impact on lowering blood pressure than aerobic exercise. If you're concerned about your blood pressure, this could help.
Physical Appearance and Self-Esteem
Strength training positively affects a woman's overall health and gives her a better quality of life as a result of the stronger body and healthier physique. Women need not worry that a strength training regimen will result in bulky muscles that make them look manly. In order for a woman to bulk up to the point to where she rivals men's muscles, specific exercises must be done on a very dedicated basis. Women should focus on the great benefits from getting involved in a strength training program without fear that their bodies will take on masculine attributes.
Improved Physical Appearance
Women's physical appearances can be greatly improved using strength training. Not only can women lose weight more quickly when including strength training in their exercise routines, but lean muscle mass is increased with strength training and can transform a woman's body into a more svelte and athletic frame.
A woman's physical appearance often has a huge impact on how she feels about herself. As a result, strength training helps some women increase their self esteem. Strength training can also assist women in feeling stronger and more graceful, both of which can boost a woman's self esteem.
Types of Strength Training for Women
With so many benefits to strength training - both physical and mental - it's a great idea for women to get involved in a program to build up strength and get healthier. While women can participate in all of the same types of strength training men can, some prefer to use strength training machines available at most gyms. Resistance bands and lightweight dumbbell exercises also offer methods for gaining strength without bulking up.
Start Strength Training
Although women do not need to jump right into a highly strenuous strength training regimen in order to derive benefits from the program, they should still take care to select an introductory program that is conducive to their fitness level and will not result in injuries. Working with a personal trainer is a great way to start up a strength training program, or you can follow a printed beginner weight training program. Regardless of the method you choose, however, starting a strength training program is a great way to begin a lifetime of health and fitness.