Exercise To Develop And Maintain Muscular Strength And Endurance, Flexibility, And Body Composition


Resistance training One set of 8-10 exercises that condition the major muscle groups, performed at least two days per week.

Most people should complete 8-12 repetitions of each exercise to the point of fatigue; practicing other repetition ranges (for example, 3-5 or 12-15) also builds strength and endurance; for older and frailer people (approximately 50-60 and older), 10-15 repetitions with a lighter weight may be more appropriate. Multiple-set regimens will provide greater benefits if time allows. Any mode of exercise that is comfortable throughout the full range of motion is appropriate (for example, free weights, kettlebells, calisthenics, elastic bands, or weight machines).

Flexibility training Static stretches, performed for the major muscle groups at least two-three days per week, ideally five-seven days per week.

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Stretch to the point of tightness, holding each stretch for 10-30 seconds; perform 2-4 repetitions of each stretch. Hapter 3 provides instructions for calculating target heart rate intensity for cardiorespiratory endurance exercise, source: Adapted from American College of Sports Medicine, 2013, ACSM's Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription, 9th ed, Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer/

Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Health; Garber, C, E., et al, 2011, Quantity and quality of exercise for developing and maintaining cardiorespiratory, musculoskeletal, and neuromotor fitness in apparently healthy adults: guidance for prescribing exercise, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 43(7): 1334-1359, exercise followed by rest also builds endurance quickly. The advantage of HIIT is that it does not take as much time as traditional endurance training. The disadvantage is that it can be painful and uncomfortable. The safety of HIIT has not been determined.

Choose activities that you enjoy and are convenient. Popular choices are in-line skating, skiing, dancing, cycling, and backpacking. Start-and-stop activities such as tennis, racquetball, and soccer can also develop cardiorespiratory endurance if your skill level is sufficient to enable periods of continuous play. Training for cardiorespiratory endurance is discussed in Chapter 3.

Muscular strength and endurance can be developed through resistance training training with weights or performing calisthenics such as push-ups, planks, and curl-ups. Training for muscular strength and endurance is discussed in Chapter 4.

• Flexibility is developed by stretching the major muscle groups regularly and with proper technique. Flexibility is discussed in Chapter 5.

• Healthy body composition can be developed through a sensible diet and a program of regular exercise. Cardiorespiratory endurance exercise is best for reducing body fat; resistance training builds muscle mass, which, to a small extent, helps increase metabolism. Body composition is discussed in Chapter 6.

Chapter 7 contains guidelines to help you choose activities and put together a complete exercise program that will suit your goals and preferences. (Refer to Figure 2.4 for a summary of the health and fitness benefits of different levels of physical activity and exercise programs. )

What about the tip of the activity pyramid? Although sedentary activities are often unavoidable attending class, studying, working in an office, and so on many people choose inactivity over activity during their leisure time. Change sedentary patterns by becoming more active whenever you can. Move more and sit less.

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