Strength training for all ages

Older folks often think that they are too old to get into the gym and improve their physical condition. On the other end of the spectrum, parents sometimes wonder when is the right time to introduce their children to exercise. The truth is that you are never too old or too young to get stronger and fitter. It is simply a matter of making the training program match the trainee. Older adults benefit greatly from the increased mobility and independence that comes from a well thought out routine. Teenagers, and younger kids as well, get a boost of confidence from training, often carrying over to sporting activities at school. For all ages in between, the benefits of exercise are well known, and include weight management, stress relief, pain relief, mobility and flexibility improvements, and improved self-confidence.

This past weekend, at FiveX3 Training, we had a cross-section of this population training with us. First up, we had Joanne, who is in early sixties and looking to get stronger so she can chase after her grandchildren. Among other things, we had her working on her deadlifts. This is easily one of the most functional exercises anyone can perform, and there is no reason for older folks to stay away from them, as long as they have proper coaching to insure good form. Deadlifting does not hurt your back. Bad form hurts your back. Here is Joanne pulling 90 pounds on the trap bar for a set of five. This is only her third session deadlifting. Pay close attention to the end of the video.

Speaking of deadlifts. Charlotte is a mother of two young children, ages three years and five months, respectively. After her recent pregnancy, Charlotte wanted to lose some weight and feel better about herself. She has been working with us for about two months, but her schedule only allows for one training session per week. She is on a program emphasizing big compound lifts (as we all should be), in order to get stronger and leaner more quickly. Her sessions are very focused and she brings 150% of herself every time. Here she is doing her deadlifts (conventional, straight bar) for five reps with 135 pounds. Her PR is 155 pounds!! Do you think she has a hard time picking up her baby carrier?

After her strength work, Charlotte jumped into a quick conditioning circuit. Her step-daughter, Courtney, who was turning 16 that very day, decided to join her. It didn’t take long for mother and daughter to be lying on the floor trying to catch their breath! Great exercise, and a bonding experience to boot. Well done ladies!!

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