Weight-lifting, or resistance training, is a great form of fitness that anyone can do. Whether you're looking to increase muscle size, improve your tone or just improve your general fitness, weight training is a great way to do it!
Weight training or resistance training involves lifting an object in a certain range of motion. Generally, these exercises target specific muscles of the body. It helps to strengthen your muscles, joints and bones. It also can help to increase your metabolism. Weight training is great for all ages, when you're older, it can help to maintain bone density, reduce muscle loss and improve general mobility. For younger people, it can do the same, however it can also significantly improve performance for sports, reduce the risk of injury and help out psychologically as well.
One of the best things about weight training is that you can never be to old to start! You can pick it up at any age and will notice benefits nearly straight away! Another great thing about weight training is that you don't need high-tech machines or even heavy weights like they have at commercial gyms. You can use basic resistance bands or even your body weight to achieve good results!
Below are a few tips if you're new to weight training!
Tip #1 - For your first session, do something with a personal trainer/strength coach
If you're brand new and have never been to a gym before or performed any weight training. Completing your first session with a personal trainer is definitely worth it. You can get an understanding for the layout at your gym, how all the machines work and then get a basic understanding of technique of certain movements.
Tip #2 - You don't need high-tech equipment or machines
You don't need heavy weights or high-tech machines to do resistance training. If getting to the gym is hard due to time commitments you can use bands or your body weight to begin. As you find yourself getting stronger, you can then expand your home collection with basic dumbbells up to 10kgs which are relatively cheap.
Tip #3 - Start with Lighter Weights
If you're new to the gym, chances are you're probably going to be unsure what or how much weight you should be using. Always start off lighter and then gradually work your way up. After a few sessions you will figure out how much you can lift and can gradually add on weight each session from there.
Tip #4 - How many sets and reps and what about recovery?
Generally, when you start out you should complete 3 sets of 10-12 reps of your chosen exercise. You should also look to rest for approximately 60 seconds between each set to give your muscles adequate time to recover. After your session you should also stretch each muscle that you worked for approximately 30 seconds or more.
Tip #5 - Take a rest day between each session
If you know someone who goes to the gym regularly, chances are they go every day. However, if you're just starting out chances are you will be very sore the next day. Give yourself 48 hours to recover, otherwise you may increase your chance of injury. As your body adapts to it's new weight training, you will then be able to go every day or 2!
If you're unsure of how to start your weight-training journey or what to do, book in with one of our physio's and they can help you start!