Weight rooms are places to find dumbbells, machines, mats and males in search of the perfect body. But, rarely are women found. Why?
Strength training in women yields benefits that are equal to or greater than those in men. Benefits that can improve the quality of life as well as self esteem. Most of the benefits are unknown and not taught.
According to Medical Health Online, “strength training is defined as the use of resistance and weights to build the strength, anaerobic endurance and size of skeletal muscles.” Strength training can be doing exercises with free weights as well as the use of weightlifting machines.
Women in this day and age seem to be more concerned with their weight and personal appearance than ever before. Almost every magazine targeted to women is filled with beauty and weight management tips. This concern with personal appearance has turned to an obsession: an obsession over topics like hair, skin and working out.
Women center their workout routine on cardiovascular exercises to lose weight. Strength training can increase metabolism, which aids in weight loss and improves the use of muscles. Through studies performed by the American College of Sports Medicine and from my personal experience, I have found that a workout routine which incorporates both cardiovascular exercises as well as strength training yields more results.
For women, strength training can have even more substantial increase and improvements. The National Osteoporosis Foundation defines the illness as a disease in which bones become fragile and more likely to break. Osteoporosis is caused by a lack of bone strength or bone density. The National Osteoporosis Foundation also states that strength training can increase bone density, which can help prevent osteoporosis. By adding strength training, osteoporosis can be slowed or even prevented. This can, as a result, increase a woman’s lifespan.
Osteoporosis degenerates and deteriorates the bodies of millions of women and it can be prevented or slowed. Strength training can improve posture, muscle symmetry, and rehabilitation after injury. Rehabilitation after injury can be applied to women specifically in terms of pregnancy and the birthing process. Mayo clinic online states that “a woman who participates in strength training can recover from childbirth as well as accidents like falls or slips quicker because of the increase in strength and flexibility.”
Besides the medical benefits, strength training can also produce psychological benefits. Strength training can be a very practical and enjoyable stress relief mechanism, as well as a self esteem booster for women. Women account for more incidences of severe stress and have overall higher levels of stress. Stress can lead to common health problems like obesity and high blood pressure and mental health problems like depression and suicide. Stress can even lead to a shorter life span and can increase the visual and mental rate of aging. Lifting weights releases chemicals that can help with relaxation and the exertion of muscles can aid in releasing bottled up stress.
From personal experience, when I am feeling stressed out, lifting weights feels like a release on all of my negative energy.
Also, with the quicker results and increased muscles tone, women are becoming happier with their physical appearances. Feeling good and looking better is essential to enjoying every other aspect of life.
Most women enjoy going to buy clothing and it look great on their bodies or wearing a swim suit on the beach. Personally, I can say that strength training has improved my overall appearance and has built a great sense of confidence within me. The feeling is wonderful and more women should experience it. Hopefully in the future, more women will utilize the weight room as a source for physical and mental development, prolonging rich and enjoyable lives for women.