The aging population is an ever growing one. Despite this, there are still some myths and misconceptions about what can be done to help seniors enjoy a greater quality of life.
For example, exercise is absolutely critical as you age. But, when we think of something like weightlifting, it isn’t something that people typically correlate with an older adult. This belief can get in the way of seniors doing the one thing that could have a drastically positive impact on their lives. The bottom line is that weightlifting is a cornerstone of healthy aging for seniors. Although there are so many ways that it can help, there is one major outcome of weightlifting that is of the utmost importance. A greater quality of life.
3 Positive impacts of weightlifting on quality of life
A more pain free life
With age comes general aches and pain. This is especially so if you have a disorder of some sort that adds to this issue.
Either way, hitting the weights, building strength, and adding muscle has been shown to be able to reduce this level of pain that seniors have to endure on a day-to-day basis.
Have you ever been poked in the eye? Stubbed your toe? Have knee pain?
Those things never really make you feel better do they. Pain can take its toll on your mood, emotions, and general day to day satisfaction. Also, by reducing pain you are removing some limitations to movement to be more engaged in your days.
On the topic of moving
Yeah maybe lifting will provide you with some muscle soreness for the day or two after but did you know that it actually has been proven to improve seniors’ functional capabilities?
That is right, it can literally help seniors have greater balance, move faster, and with greater confidence. This cannot be understated how valuable it is. Firstly because being able to move about on your own with independence is a crucial aspect of quality of life. Additionally, reducing your chance of falling and your fear of falling allows you to go about enjoying your life with fewer injuries and not be paralyzed in fear by the thought of injury.
Improved mental, emotional, and cognitive health
Lifting weights have been shown in study after study to improve all three of these critical aspects of health. From fighting off depression, improving self-esteem, to improving memory and higher level thinking.
When one area of these three begins to suffer it can start to strain other areas of life and hinder your quality of life.
This is where lifting helps from another direction as well.
If you have less pain and you have greater functional capacity and independence, you have the ability to be more active and engaged. This allows you to enjoy more social interactions. Whether that be family parties, group exercise classes, enjoying a night out with loved ones, or even vacations. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that you have the ability to continue living your life, maintaining and building the relationships with the ones you love, and being present for as many great memories and milestones as possible.
If you needed any more reason to start building strength and muscle in the weight room, here are 78 scientifically backed benefits of weightlifting for seniors: