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  • Cédrine Pittet

Benefits of resistance training

Bijgewerkt: apr 19

what good is resistance training?

Resistance training, particularly with heavier weights, is often categorised as dangerous and unnecessary in rehab or when training with an elderly population. We think otherwise!


In our practice, a phrase that we hear often is "are you sure?" when we are adding weights to the bar. We believe that resistance training can benefit everyone when applying the progressive overload principle. It is a safe and effective way for rehabilitation and improves daily life activities. When used structurally, everyone can safely lift weights without any injury risk.


It is not uncommon to see clients fear loading themselves during resistance training. This hesitancy can be due to health narratives, diminished confidence, chronic pain or pain beliefs (Jack et al. 2010). The result can be fear-based under loading, where clients train on much less load than they would be capable of doing.


What is good training?

Opening pandora’s box to what “good training” implies would be a whole other topic and is dependent on your goals. However, certain physiological principles are unquestionable for a successful and, per definition, good training program. Muscles need mechanical stimuli with an appropriate and progressive load to gain mass and improve strength. Constant under loading will lead to a loss of muscle mass, while a structured and progressive overload will increase muscle mass and strength. The stimuli received during resistance training forces muscles to adapt and grow, which improves joint stability by putting less strain on the surrounding ligaments (Wisdom et al. 2015). Movement for joints is elementary since they do not have a direct blood supply and rely solely on lubrication, which is the optimal nutrition for the cartilage.


A training program’s very essence is to improve your fitness. Your body relies on a good balance of training, recovery and nutrition. After recovery, your body’s anticipating nature will be able to withstand the next training challenge ahead. This theory is known as the ‘supercompensation model’ and describes our physical capacity to improve our fitness by alternating stress and rest to progressively reach new performance levels (Bompa and Buzzichelli 2019).



Supercompensation-model
Supercompensation model

What if I experience pain?

If you are recovering from an injury and are experiencing pain, know that this is initially a normal physical reaction from your body, signalling you to protect the injured area for healing. However, following the philosophy of “rest is best” for a prolonged time can increase the risk of chronic pain, where the nervous system becomes overly sensitised (Booth et al. 2017).


Pain is a complex and highly individual matter, where you know best how it feels. As physiotherapists, we are here to educate and guide you through the various aspects of pain and how they can affect your wellbeing. Physiological and sociological factors and psychological influences are considered the most important factors for well-being and health and can ultimately influence the perceived level of pain (Linton and Shaw 2011).


What is our approach at Movement Based Therapy?

In our practice, we believe you can. We will tailor your training program with goals relevant to you and encourage you to discover and push your capacities.

As our name suggests, we understand movement as therapy with its ability to improve and achieve your best form both physically and mentally. Whilst you are recovering from an injury or wish to improve your condition, overall, we provide you with evidence-based guidance and education in strength and conditioning. Emphasis is given to a detailed and extensive intake, where we discuss your concerns, goals, expectations, fears, wishes and agenda to establish a tailored training and treatment plan.


Curious about our approach in resistance training?

don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to answer all of your questions! We are here for you 5 days a week in our practice inside the walls of Kracht Amsterdam!




References


Booth J, Moseley GL, Schiltenwolf M, Cashin A, Davies M, Hübscher M. Exercise for chronic musculoskeletal pain: A biopsychosocial approach. Musculoskeletal Care. 2017 Dec;15(4):413-421.

Link: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28371175/


Jack K, McLean SM, Moffett JK, Gardiner E. Barriers to treatment adherence in physiotherapy outpatient clinics: a systematic review. Man Ther. 2010;15(3):220-228. Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2923776/


Linton SJ, Shaw WS. Impact of psychological factors in the experience of pain. Phys Ther. 2011 May;91(5):700-11

Link: https://academic.oup.com/ptj/article/91/5/700/2735743


Wisdom KM, Delp SL, Kuhl E. Use it or lose it: multiscale skeletal muscle adaptation to mechanical stimuli. Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 2015 Apr;14(2):195-215.

Link: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25199941/


Bompa CO, Buzzichelli C. Periodization. Theory and Methodology of Training. 6th ed. Champaign: Human Kinetics; 2019. p. 8 - 14.



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