Otium Planning Group is a contemporary sport and leisure consultancy providing services in planning, facility development, management and funding for the sport, recreation and leisure industries…read more
Resistance training benefits both older women and older men
Men and women aged over 50 can reap similar relative benefits from resistance training, a new study led by UNSW Sydney shows.
While men are likely to gain more absolute muscle size, the gains relative to body size are on par to those achieved by women.
The findings, recently published in Sports Medicine, consolidated the results of 30 different resistance training studies involving over 1400 participants. This paper specifically compared the results of men and women aged 50 and over.
Dr Amanda Hagstrom (pictured below), Exercise Science Lecturer at UNSW Medicine & Health and senior author of the study, explained “historically, people tended to believe that men adapted to a greater degree from resistance training compared to women.
“The differences we found primarily relate to how we look at the data – that is, absolutely or relatively. ‘Absolute’ looks at the overall gains, while ‘relative’ is a percentage based on their body size.”
The paper is the first systematic review and meta-analysis to examine whether older men and women reap different resistance training results. The findings add to past research on differences in younger adults (18-50), which suggested that men and women can achieve similar relative muscle size gains.
The researchers compared muscle mass and strength gains in 651 older men and 759 older women across the 30 studies. The participants were aged between 50 and 90, with most having no prior resistance training experience.
While 50 is not typically considered an ‘older adult’, it was selected as the threshold for this study given the potential for menopausal hormone changes to influence resistance training outcomes.
Dr Hagstrom noted “we found no sex differences in changes in relative muscle size or upper body strength in older adults.
“It’s important for trainers to understand that women benefit just as much as men in terms of relative improvement compared to their baseline.”
With the researchers finding that older men tending to build bigger muscles when looking at absolute gains, it was found they were also more likely to see greater absolute improvements to upper and lower body strength.
However, when it came to relative lower body strength, older women saw the biggest increases.
Dr Hagstrom added “our study sheds light on the possibility that we should be programming differently for older men and women to maximise their training benefits.
“Older men might benefit from higher intensity programs to improve their absolute upper and lower body strength.
“But older women might benefit from higher overall exercise volumes - that is, more weekly repetitions - to increase their relative and absolute lower body strength.”
Noting that feeling stronger and having bigger muscles aren’t the only benefits to resistance training, Dr Hagstrom concluded “strength training is very important and beneficial to our health – especially for older people.
“It can help prevent and treat many age-related chronic diseases, like diabetes, heart disease and arthritis.”
Click here to view the research.
20th July 2020 - Parramatta’s fitness professionals help local seniors stay active
12th December 2019 - New study shows workout frequency has biggest impact on women’s strength gains
9th October 2019 - YMCA hosts successful Get Active Expo for Seniors Month
4th October 2019 - Research highlights the benefits of resistance training for seniors’ fitness
10th May 2019 - ESSA focuses on Active Ageing during Exercise Right Week 2019
18th November 2018 - Strength training experts to come together in Perth
23rd August 2018 - Golf NSW reports success of seniors program
28th June 2018 - Japan’s fitness industry adapts to ageing demographics
26th April 2018 - integratedliving Australia opens new seniors gym in Raymond Terrace
19th April 2017 - Aged care gym facility achieves positive wellbeing for seniors
29th March 2017 - Study shows HIIT the best exercise for anti-ageing
20th February 2017 - Strength training carries weight for obese teens
3rd November 2016 - Fitness Australia calls on Australians to lift the bar on strength training
7th October 2016 - Seniors gym sees improvements in strength and balance
13th January 2016 - New range of outdoor fitness equipment for seniors
23rd July 2015 - Precor advises gyms on women-focussed strength training
20th December 2013 - New Zealand seniors urged to get active
18th November 2013 - Community campaign for seniors’ outdoor gyms
26th April 2012 - Ageing population presents opportunites for fitness clubs
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
Centaman has been a market leader in Enterprise Software Solutions for the leisure and recreation industry and both profit and not-for-profit attractions since 1991. It offers a wide range of software…read more
Anti Wave International is the original suppliers of top performance swim, aquatic sports, leisure and pool programming equipment. Founded in 1971, Anti Wave International is proud of its…read more
Clubware’s online gym software is not your run of the mill management system. It has been carefully designed to incorporate all the elements that a fitness club would need. How did we do that?…read more
@leisure is a team of experienced leisure, aquatic and sports facility managers and planners, with market modelling, sports management, recreation planning, business and GIS qualifications. We have…read more
At easyemployer we've come up with a software solution that manages one of your most important, and often most costly, business resources - your staff. We are helping 100s of clients to…read more
APT (Advanced Polymer Technology) is the leading global manufacturer of polyurethane-based materials, acrylic coatings and synthetic turf products for sporting and recreational applications. From…read more
Smart Connection Consultancy is a boutique sport and recreation consultancy who has become one of Australia’s leading advocates for the use of synthetic sports surfaces as a vehicle to grow…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!