Strengthening Exercises For Active Adults – Part 1

Strengthening can increase your metabolism, build muscle tissue, reduce age related muscle loss, and keep your weight and blood sugar levels in check. The following exercises can be performed 3-5 days per week, every other day. Try to work your body at a moderate intensity. Challenge yourself but don’t push yourself to the limits. On a scale of 1-10, try to be around an 8 to build muscle effectively.

Seated Straight Arm Deltoid Raise – This will improve shoulder strength.

• Sit straight up in a chair with feet flat on the floor.

• While holding on to some kind of weight to your sides, raise both arms straight out to shoulder height.  Start with very light weights and work toward heavier weights over time.

• Hold for 2 seconds and then lower to starting position.

• Repeat 5 – 15 times

Chair Stand – This will improve abdominal and quad muscles.

• Place a pillow or two against the back of a chair.  Make sure the chair is stable and will not slide or tip.

• While seated towards the front of the chair, lean back onto pillows.

• Cross your arms in front of you.

• Raise your body forwards to a full upright position; try not to use your arms.

• Now slowly stand up, using your hands as little as possible.

• Slowly sit back down.

• Repeat 5 – 15 times.

Seated Bicep Curl – This will improve arm strength for pulling motions.

• Sit straight up in a chair with feet flat on the floor and your hands to your side.

• While holding onto some kind of weight, slowly bend one arm towards your shoulder, hold for 2 seconds and slowly lower to a starting position.  Again, start with very light weights and work toward using incrementally heavier weights over time.

• Repeat 5 – 15 times and then switch arms.

Standing Calf Raises – This will improve ankle stability and calf muscles.

• Stand up nice and tall behind a chair. Hold on for balance.

• Begin by rising up on your tiptoe as high as possible.

• Hold position for 2 seconds and slowly lower heels back down to floor.

• Repeat 5 – 15 times.

Seated Tricep Extension – This will improve arm strength for pushing motions.

• Sit in a chair towards the front with feet flat on the floor.

• While holding a weight, raise one arm up toward ceiling and support it with the other hand at the elbow.  Start with very light weights and progress to heavier weights over time.

• Bend the raised arm at elbow behind your head towards your shoulder.

• Now slowly lift the weight up towards the ceiling.

• Repeat 5 – 15 times and then switch arms.

Remember to use a weight that is somewhat challenging and work your way up to 15 repetitions. If you do not have dumb bells, try using soup cans, socks fill with rice or beans or milk jugs filled with water.

Stay tuned in for my next two blogs on strengthening and the progressions of these five exercises.

Happy New Year and Live Actively!

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