A new study claims strength training can help you live longer. It all depends on how much you speed up your weight-lifting routine in order to generate force and velocity to be able to do the movement with power.
"Rising from a chair in old age and kicking a ball depends more on muscle power than muscle strength, yet most weight-bearing exercise focuses on the latter," study author Claudio Gil Araújo, Professor at Exercise Medicine Clinic -- CLINIMEX in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, told a news portal. Adding, "Our study shows that people with more muscle power tend to live longer."
Researchers came to this conclusion after conducting a study that included 3,878 non-athletes ( aged 41-85 years) to investigate this subject between 2001 and 2016. 5 per cent of the participant where were over 80 and almost 68 per cent were men. The group participated in a maximal muscle power test by using upright row exercise.
The maximal muscle power was considered by taking note of the highest value achieved after two-three attempts of strength training with increasing loads. Researchers divided the values into quartiles for survival analysis. The also analysed the impact this had on men and women separately.A median follow-up taken after six years showed: 247 men (10 per cent) and 75 women (6 per cent) died.
"We now show that power is strongly related to all-cause mortality. But the good news is you only need to be above the median for your sex to have the best survival, with no further benefit in becoming even more powerful," Araújo told a news portal.
The findings show that to increase muscle power you need to perform multiple exercises for the upper and lower body with weights that are not too easy or too heavy in order to live longer.
Muscle power starts to decrease after you turn 50-years-old. Therefore maintaining an active lifestyle is critical to your health."Just doing aerobic exercise is not adequate, Dr Robert Schreiber, physician-in-chief at Hebrew SeniorLife and an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, told a news portal. Adding, "Unless you are doing strength training, you will become weaker and less functional."Harvard researchers say all you need is 20 minutes to perform strength-building workouts.
The study's findings were presented at the EuroPrevent 2019 in Lisbon.