Subject: The benefits of resistance exercise without previous experience - Comments and suggestions are welcome! Don't hesitate and leave a comment on our comment section down below the article!
Some people might think it is too late for them to start exercising to reinforce their health or gain muscle mass. However, new research from the University of Birmingham shows that even people who have never exercised before can profit from resistance workouts like weight training, shoulder presses, or bench presses.
Scientists compared mucle-gaining ability in 2 groups of older males. One group consisted of athletes with a lot of experience in their seventies or eighties. The other group consisted of men at a similar age to the first group, but they had never regularly exercised before in their life.
The participating males where given isotope tracers and then took part in a single session of active training, focusing on weight training or other resistance type workouts. Muscle biopsies were taken before and after the exercises. These biopsies were then compared to see how the muscles responded to exercise.
The researchers initially expected that the more experienced group would have the ability to gain muscles faster due to their history with muscle building and superior level of fitness. Interestingly though, it was shown that both groups had built muscles at the same speed in response to the training.
Lead scientist Dr. Leigh Breen stated that the study clearly shows that it does not matter if you are a frequent exerciser or have been in your entire life. People can still benefit from exercise regardless of the starting moment. He continued his statement by emphasizing that it is, of course, always better to have a long term commitment to good health.
It is pointed out that public health advice with regards to resistance training for older people has been quite nebulous. The advice given is to create more precise guidelines for older people on how to improve muscle strength inside the home setting. Simple everyday activities like gardening, and taking the stairs more often can already be beneficial.
All in all, there is hope for those that didn't have the right impulse or haven't had the time before to partake in regular exercise. You can decide to start right now and reap the benefits.
For those that are interested and want to read more about this subject, the study results are published in the science journal: Frontiers in Physiology.
Sources and further reading: EurekAlert/AAAS news release / Breen et al (2019). 'Comparable Rates of Integrated Myofibrillar Protein Synthesis Between Endurance-Trained Master Athletes and Untrained Older Individuals'. Frontiers in Physiology
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