As we age, it’s important to remember to exercise and keep yourself strong. Weight training not only keeps you in shape, but it can also help you build bone density.
Here’s exercise physiologist Bruce Brazeal with information about a class for people over 60 years old at the Hartford HealthCare Bone & Joint Institute.
Q. First, why is it so important to stay physically fit as we age, other than the obvious reasons?
A. Bone density and muscle mass drops rapidly after 50. Weight and resistance training are a critical part of a complete exercise program. In addition to the link between muscle mass and metabolism — muscle burns more calories at rest than fat — increasing muscle and bone strength also prevents falls and fractures. You still need cardio, but we focus on weights.
Q. What types of exercises do you do in this class?
A. With our over-60 weight training class, we use weights, bands, kettlebells and body weight movements. With movement-based exercises – we focus on squat, lunge, upper-body push and upper-body pull variations. This class is twice a week, Monday and Wednesday mornings for an hour, and we focus on building strength and range of motion
Q. This class is just one of many at the Center for Musculoskeletal Health at the Bone & Joint Institute – there are also services to enhance your performance?
A. We treat the athlete as a whole, we help them after injuries and we can also do a full body 3D motion analysis in our state of the art lab. We also have a bridge program for athletes who want to continue services after physical therapy is over, they can work with us to ensure they are at their best before they return to sport.