Resistance training can sometimes be mixed up with weight training. Weight training is, simply put, training with weights to build muscle, while resistance training is specific to using push or pull methods, with different types of equipment, like weights, body weight, resistance bands and more. Resistance training is great to begin at any age, but it becomes much more important as we get older due to the natural mechanics of the human body.

What Happens To Our Bodies As We Get Older?

Muscles will typically lose strength, endurance and flexibility (“Aging: What to expect”) in time. Losing these key factors of the human body affects overall functionality. Furthermore, people who aren’t physically active after the age of 30 can lose anywhere from 3% to 5% of muscle mass per decade (“Sarcopenia (Muscle Loss With Aging)..”). That means, from the age of 30 to 80, muscle mass and function can decline up to 25%. Thankfully, muscle strength, and functionality for stability, coordination and balance can be improved and even preserved through resistance training.


Functionality Decreases With Age

Functionality becomes more relevant the more we age. Getting older makes us realize that being able to do the things we used to do in our younger years is not always possible. Since muscles tend to get weaker with age (Fielding), it’s beneficial to stay on a frequent training schedule. Being able to stay mobile without pain is not impossible, with the right training program, it’s doable and much easier than going at it alone.

Everyday Movements

The importance of moving without pain becomes more important in our daily lives the older we get. Things we used to take for granted like being able to get out of bed, bend over, play sports or enjoy other activities that demand physical engagement, become more in focus and at the forefront of our decision making in terms of whether they should be done or not.

While moans and groans as we sit might be inevitable, being able to stay in the tennis club or walking upstairs without knee pain is very possible, even into advanced age, if we build strength, flexibility and stay mobile as we age. Unfortunately, without a training regimen, most people have to start crossing things off the “able to do” list in their daily lives.

Common Everyday Activities That Get Harder With Age

  • Picking things off the floor

  • Opening jars or packaging

  • Going up or down the stairs

  • Household chores

  • Getting in and out of the bathtub

  • Standing up from an armchair

  • Getting around by foot

  • Using modern technology

  • Putting shoes on/taking shoes off

  • Driving

  • Going to the shops

  • Staying in touch with family and friends

  • Taking public transport

  • Seeing family and friends in person

  • Personal care, such as washing or shaving face or legs etc.

List By Doug Shields “Here’s a List of Things That Get Harder as We Get Older” 


Future Mobility

It’s not merely the things we used to do that become harder though, functionality becomes more crucial for the things we’d like to do as time goes on. Being able to lift groceries, play with the kids or grandkids, standing for long periods of time, or even going on family vacations, can become a daunting task as we get older due to joint pain and lack of muscle strength. Joint health is essential for mobility (Nestlé Health Science), and maintaining muscle mass through resistance training can help combat the effects of aging joints.


Resistance Training Is Modified With Age

People who are in good shape and regularly physically active might think that they can keep up with the same workout routines for life. However, since functionality decreases as you age, and bones weaken, you are more prone to injury (Perkins) the older you get. For this reason, it’s beneficial to modify your resistance training routine as you age, something your trainer will be able to help you with.

Movement Patterns Remain The Same

If you’re currently doing resistance training, the way you interact with your training program should change in certain ways. Movement patterns, however, like squats, presses, pulls, and deadlifts, should remain the same. The cool thing is that when you’re older, you don’t have to work out a ton in order to reap the benefits.


Frequency And Intensity Change

The frequency and intensity brought to your workouts should actually go down in order to properly train our bodies in regard to aging muscles and joints. Significantly reducing the chance of injury. As we get older, certain workouts translate to everyday types of movement. Functional movement patterns like sitting (squats), bending over (deadlifts) or being able to lift and or push things will remain as the cornerstone of your training program. Which makes the importance of resistance training more clear and appreciated as time goes on.

Should I Do Resistance Training On My Own Or With A Trainer?

Resistance training is certainly possible on your own, but having accountability through a program will ensure you stay on track. It’ll feel a lot easier, be more fun, and also give you more motivation to stay committed. Since each person is different, it’s most beneficial to have a specific program designed for particular needs. A consistent and appropriate training program will help you not only live longer, but better and more pain free!


Why A Personal Trainer Is Beneficial For Resistance Training

Specific reasons we recommend training through a program with a professional fitness trainer:

  • Guidance on proper form. Not just to avoid the risk of injury but also to effectively tackle muscle strengthening and toning the right way.
  • Breathing techniques. Not something too many people think about, but the way you breathe while doing resistance training is something a trainer can help you regulate and modify for specific workouts.
  • Adequate pace and movement. Knowing how fast or slow to perform certain exercises is crucial for individual mobility needs, which a trainer can assess you for.
  • Safe equipment usage. Your trainer can verse you on the correct equipment to use during training and make sure those tools are safe and well maintained. They’ll also teach you the correct ways to handle workout equipment in between exercises.
  • Workout attire inspiration. Personal trainers will help make sure you’re wearing the right type of clothing for your workout.
  • Trainers help with motion ability. They will ensure that you reach your full range of motion during each exercise to encourage muscle growth and retention in the most effective way.
  • Knowing when to keep pushing forward and when to stop. Sometimes working out alone can lead to overworking our bodies in unhealthy ways, or stopping a workout before any progress is made. A trainer will motivate you to keep pushing forward when they know you can continue and won’t allow you to keep exercising when your body is over exacerbated or injured. In the case of an injury, your trainer can also offer insight on different solutions to compensate for the same end goal.
  • Scheduling. Having a proper workout schedule is something your personal trainer will help you build and it will ensure that you get the proper rest needed in between workout days while keeping you accountable (“6 Benefits Only a Personal Trainer Can Provide”) for showing up while making sure you’re having fun and enjoying your results.

Get Effective Resistance Training Results

Whether you’re a newbie to the gym or a master of the weights, everyone can benefit from consistent movement and resistance training. Regardless of your lifestyle or plans in life, being pain free and strong enough to carry out basic tasks becomes increasingly important as we age. You can achieve this with a thoughtful and well executed training plan from a private trainer so you can get the results you’re looking for. If you’re in Beaverton, OR, or the surrounding areas, we’d love to have you at The Quad!