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Regular exercise can keep you fit, improve your mood and even help you manage stress better. A regular exercise routine can guard you against heart disease and stroke, control obesity, relieve back pain and prevent osteoporosis. Weight Lifting exercises can target specific region in the body like legs, chest, and abdominal muscles, shoulders, forearms and buttocks.
Many specific muscles get strengthened due to this specific region-wise weight training. Weight training exercises for legs strengthen the calves and hamstrings, while training on the back strengthens three muscle regions - the latisimus dorsi, rhomboids (Upper/middle back) and erector spinae. We take a look at the benefits of weight training and the precautions to be followed.
Benefits of weight lifting exercises
Improved Physical Performance and Appearance:
One important benefit of weight training is physical performance. Weight training increases the muscles' size, strength and endurance. Another benefit of a weight-training program is its effect on our appearance and body composition, which can directly influence self-esteem and level of confidence. Take, for example, a 150-pound lady who has 20 % body fat--24 pounds of fat weight and 126 pounds of lean body weight.
By embarking on an effective weight-training program, she replaces five pounds of fat with five pounds of muscle. Though she still weighs 150 pounds, she is now 17 percent fat -- with 19 pounds of fat weight and 131 pounds of lean body weight. although her body weight remains the same, her strength, muscle tone, and metabolism have improved, giving her a slimmer and more attractive appearance.
A good weight-training exercise schedule helps in conditioning the basal metabolic rate (BMR) of our body. When we implement the principles of effective weight training, we can achieve an increase in lean muscle mass throughout the body and increase the BMR. With this, we can condition the metabolism to work better and more efficiently, even when we are at rest.
Decreased Risk of Injury:
Our muscles function as shock absorbers and serve as important balancing agents throughout our body. Well-conditioned muscles help to lessen the repetitive forces in activities such as jogging or playing basketball. Well-balanced muscles reduce the risk of injuries that result when a muscle is weaker than its opposing muscle group. An effective weight-training exercise program plays a pivotal role in avoiding joint-related injuries especially for athletes and sports persons.
Gain strength and endurance:
Weight lifting exercises provide resistance to face injuries on account of the heightened physical activity.
Listed below are the safety precautions to be followed before embarking on any weight lifting exercise regimen:
Get a complete physical checkup conducted before starting a weight lifting exercise schedule. There might be a need to modify or avoid weightlifting, if there are muscle or joint problems, seizure disorders, heart disease, high blood pressure, previous injuries or any other physical conditions with potential for danger.
Begin a new weightlifting program with lightweights. It is far better to start out too light than too heavy to prevent muscle fatigue and injury.
Integrate warm-ups, stretching and cooling-down into the fitness program. This will reduce the risk of injury by increasing blood flow and prepare the muscles for the workout. Include stretching and jogging exercises before progressing with the actual weight-training exercise schedule.
Take the advice of a qualified trainer with sound fitness technique to assist you in the weight training exercises. Wear shoes with good traction.
Get set to achieve a leaner and stronger body with better posture and improved balance and coordination. Increase your rested metabolism rate and protect your bones against osteoporosis.
Weight Training Equipment
Dumbbell and Barbells:Dumbbells and barbells are weights made of steel. They come in different standards and are provided with rubber grips and collars that make them easy to use.
Abenches:Abenches are bench- like equipments with weights fitted on to them. Abenches are used to strengthen abdominal regions. Abdominal exercises are critical for overall functional strength as well as to provide support for the lower back. They also assist in achieving a well-toned midsection.
Ellipticals: Ellipticals are equipment, which stress on weight training for the legs and calves. They have attached weights, which can be adjusted according to the number of sets and requirements.
Other than the above mentioned equipments there are also equipments for specialized weight training equipment for chest, back and arm regions such as lifts, curls, presses and rows.