Sport and health

What is strength training and why is it so popular?

We explain the benefits and how we can put it into practice

2 min
A group of people doing strength exercises in a gym

BarcelonaNowadays we hear a lot about strength training to improve our physical health and to delay aging. But many times, when these words are spoken to us, we are not very clear what they are referring to, nor do we know how to put it into practice.

Surely many of us, when we talk about this topic, can't help but imagine a gym room full of sweaty people moving weights and machines that, in most cases, make us very lazy or we think are not for us. we. But currently this highly recommended strength training goes far beyond a gym room. It can be practiced in many ways, in very different spaces and without the need for any type of material, and this is the concept of strength work with your own body weight.

It is evident that, when starting any type of training, it is worth doing it following the advice of a professional – or under his supervision –, but with this article we want to give a few glimpses of its benefits and explain who and how you can put it into practice. ~BK_LINE_HOP~

Strength work with one's own body weight is characterized by “carrying out exercises that simulate the natural movements of the human body that each person does in their daily lives from a global point of view,” says Oriol Subiranas, physiotherapist. and gym room technician at Espai Salut Vic, who adds that “each person will have to be taken into account individually due to their characteristics, type of work, sport they practice or lifestyle.”

It is a type of training that allows you to create a base of general strength, in such a way that obvious physical changes are achieved, and the demand can be increased progressively.

These physical changes range from an improvement in body perception, with progress in the balance of body weight and metabolism, to the improvement of daily gestures required by the actions we do, how to dress, get up, climb and going down stairs, going shopping, getting in and out of the car, playing with our children or grandchildren, passing through an improvement in the sensations when playing sports or our hobbies.

What are the reasons for practicing it and what benefits will we achieve?

Although the list is long and each person can find their own reasons, we propose some of the most notable ones:

Accessibility and ease of practice would be two of the key points of this type of training, since “it does not require any special equipment, so it can be done anywhere and at any time,” says Narayan Macià, trainer. physical.

The improvement of people's quality of life , since "it contributes very actively to preventing different future diseases, helps reduce injuries in the case of practicing other sports, helps reduce pain and improves self-esteem and self-confidence." because it makes you feel good,” explains Oriol Subiranas, physiotherapist and gym room technician at Espai Salut Vic.

Improving coordination and functional strength for greater comfort in daily routines, especially in overweight or elderly people.

Variety and fun are two notable aspects of this type of training, “which allows you not to fall into a routine, since, well planned, the exercises can be very varied and help maintain high motivation,” explains Macià. This way it will be easier not to give up and make it part of the habits that we acquire. In this sense, Inma Clemente, illustrator and mountain running practitioner, says that it is a type of training that she really likes to do: "There are many different exercises, I play music and, if the weather is good, I do it outdoors." .

The progression in difficulty, since the exercises are infinite. We can start with very basic movements and complicate or increase their intensity according to the evolution of each person.

The adaptability of your practice and its objectives, which can be adjusted to each specific moment: times when you have more or less time, more or less space, when you want greater intensity or a little more sessions. calm, etc.

Safety. It is a safe practice, as long as the exercises are done properly - therefore, we always advise that we let ourselves be guided by a specialist, especially at the beginning. Since there is no complement of weights and we always work with our own body, it becomes a very safe job that does not usually cause injuries. “It allows me to see which muscles I have are weaker. Unlike when I gain weight, in this case I cannot differentiate if it is weakness or if I have gained too much weight,” says Clemente.

Who can practice it?

If we ask the specialists for which people this type of training would be ideal, both Subiranas and Macià do not hesitate to affirm that it is a job that adapts very well to practically all types of people, regardless of age or physical condition. or health, always, of course, that the intensity and difficulty adapt to each person and each vital moment. There are a series of profiles that highly benefit from its practice:

People who suffer pain in different parts of the body. "Many patients who come to the physiotherapy box with different ailments, we encourage them to incorporate well-directed strength work, because it clearly helps them improve the discomfort they present," explains Oriol.

People who are starting to practice general sports , since they can learn the basic movements without the added risk of weights and adapt the intensity, increasing it very progressively.

People with little time and space. "When I have little time, I do short routines and, even if they are just a few minutes, I am not left with that feeling of having done nothing," says Inma Clemente.

More experienced athletes as a complement to improve functional strength and agility. The combination of more specific and demanding training with this always has a positive and much more complete result.

People recovering from injuries.

Seniors , since "it helps them maintain muscle strength and agility and they notice many improvements in their daily routines," says Macià.

Children of all ages.

People who travel a lot and who do not have a specific place to practice physical activity and who have little time. "I especially practice it when I'm traveling for work or on vacation," says Clemente.

In conclusion, it is an exceptional job for both athletes and those who seek to stay healthy. As Inma explains, "they are exercises that can be done, if necessary, in fifteen or twenty minutes in the morning when we get up or at any other time." "They can be done at home, in the garden or wherever you want, not There is an excuse," he adds.