Let’s get the bad news out of the way first, shall we? Your muscle mass decreases every 10 years after your 30s, and this decline accelerates after your 60s. Now for the good news: you can prevent this natural decline, and we’re here to help. We’ve rounded up five exercises to slow muscle aging that trainers swear by, so put on your sneakers and let’s get going.
According to a review published in the journal Current Opinion on Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care, loss of muscle mass, function and strength is a major contributor to disability in the elderly, as the risk of falls and injury increases with age. If left unchecked, you will also greatly increase your risk of suffering from obesity and other diseases.
With smart resistance training exercises on deck, you’ll have a solid fitness plan that increases your muscle size and even improves joint health, bone strength, and overall cardiovascular fitness. Here are five great exercises to slow muscle aging. They are very effective and easy to learn and perform, even if you have pre-existing injuries.
Squats are an amazing way to build lower body muscle, strength, and power. This variation is kinder to your joints and improves your balance and stability, which is vital as you get older.
To perform split squats, stand with one foot about three feet in front of the other so that your knees form two 90-degree angles at the bottom. Come straight down and drive with your front heel. Don’t let your front knee go past your toe.
Push-ups are the best upper body exercise you can do, whether you’re a professional athlete or a beginner. It strengthens the muscles in your chest, shoulders, arms, and even your core!
Get into a push-up position with your hands about shoulder-width apart. Keep your lower back flat and don’t let your hips sag. Lower your body and keep your elbows close to your chest as you descend. To make this exercise more difficult, elevate your feet and to make it easier, elevate your hands on a bench.
Rows are an essential exercise for targeting the upper back and arms. With a strong back, you’ll maintain better posture, enjoy healthier shoulders, and even see that strength spread to the rest of your body!
Set a cable handle at chest height. Grasp the handle, take a step back and face the cable. Start the movement by pulling your shoulder blade towards your midline and row without twisting your torso. Then switch sides.
Carriers are one of the easiest ways to build full-body strength, core stability, and better conditioning. This also affects everyday life: imagine transporting your groceries with ease!
To perform the movement correctly, grab a heavy dumbbell with one hand, keep your chest up and your shoulder blades squeezed, and walk with your body level.
This is a super easy exercise to do to strengthen your hamstrings, glutes, and more. This is important because hip strength is the cornerstone of athletic performance: the stronger your hips, the stronger the rest of your body will be. Strong hips also mean happy knees and a happy lower back.
To settle in, lie on your back and bend one knee to form a 90 degree angle. Glue the other leg straight. With your leg bent, squeeze your glute, push through your heel, drive your hips up, and keep your hips level as you rise. Keep your right leg straight throughout the exercise and keep it aligned with your torso.
Anthony J. Yeung
Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS, is a fitness expert featured in Esquire, GQ, and Men’s Health and the founder of GroomBuilder, the destination for men who want to transform their bodies for their weddings. Join the free 5-day course to burn fat and build muscle for the big day! Learn more about Anthony
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