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Strength training for seniors: Easier than you think

What is strength training? It’s exercising several times a week with resistance and weights. Strength training has numerous benefits, including reducing signs and symptoms of numerous diseases and chronic conditions, including:

  • • Arthritis • Diabetes • Osteoporosis • Obesity • Back pain • Depression
  • Strength and resistance training also helps reduce falls and restores balance. It also strengthens bones and muscles. Strength and resistance training can be done by virtually any one at any age and with items you have around the house. You do not need to join a gym to do strength or resistance training!

    Tufts University and the Centers for Disease Control have developed a strength-training program called Growing Stronger that is based on sound scientific research. The exercises are designed to increase the strength of your muscles, maintain the integrity of your bones, and improve your balance, coordination and mobility. The program is designed from warm up to cool down and is provides progressive exercises you can do at home. Go to and search for Strength Training for Older Adults. There’s a booklet you can download that includes a 12-week program. The website also includes detailed information about the exercises and how the program progresses as you get stronger. You don’t need any fancy equipment…just a chair, a wall, a counter, a stair step and some weights (you can use objects from around your home). As with any exercise program, check with your doctor first before beginning an exercise program. Then get moving and start strength training!

    Central Valley Medical Group is an independent physician association of nearly 200 doctors in Stanislaus County committed to senior health. CVMG accepts Medicare Advantage plans from various insurance companies, including a $0 premium plan. For more information, visit

    or phone (209) 573-7401.