According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 150 minutes of high to moderate endurance activity per week is necessary for leading a healthy lifestyle. In fact, strength training has been found to be incredibly beneficial for people of all ages, including older adults. Weight training for old men can help you stay fit, maintain your independence, and reduce symptoms associated with the risk of coronary heart diseases and other chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Besides, it also boosts flexibility and balance.
Apart from that, starting a program of weight training for old men can help you get a new lease on life and avert the mid-life crisis. Building lean muscle mass will not only help your physical and mental health, but it will also help you live longer.
On that note, here are some of the best workouts for men over 60 and fitness tips for older men.
Exercise for seniors and weight training for old men
Weight training has numerous benefits even at old age. It aids fat loss, helps in building lean muscle, provides increased energy and stamina, better sleep, more self-confidence, improved mood and ease in performing daily tasks.
But, the benefits don’t stop here. Weight lifting for old guys can be particularly helpful when it comes to ageing. Weight training prevents cognitive decline, decreases the risk of injury, protect joints, and prevent chronic health conditions including arthritis, heart diseases, diabetes, etc.
Here are some of the best workouts for men over 60:
1. Dumbbell Rows
Perform two sets of 10 reps with as much weight as you can endure.
- First, start with the right knee and hand on a bench with the left foot placed firmly on the ground.
- Grab the weight using the left hand and lift the weight off the ground until it touches your midriff or chest.
- After the first set, rest for 30 seconds before proceeding to the next.
2. Dumbbell Curls
Dumbbell curls are one of the best exercise for seniors. Perform two sets of 10 to 15 reps using as much weight as you are comfortable with.
Start by keeping the weights with arms by your sides and lift the weights at the same time or alternately. But, make sure that you lift with your wrists facing straight up.
3. Weighted push-ups
Perform 2 to 3 sets of weighted push-ups keeping your hands tucked under your shoulders and feet together. First, start with 20 reps and increase gradually as you gain more strength and endurance.
Pull-ups are one of the best exercises for weight training for old men. Using the bar, try to switch between underhand and overhand hanging pull-ups. First start with 2 sets of 10 to 12 reps. Gradually, repeat the pull-ups until you are tired.
5. Diamond push-ups
While performing diamond push-ups, your hands should be tucked under your chest and your legs should be slightly apart. Perform 2 to 3 sets of 20 reps each, and try to increase the reps as you gain more strength.
6. Dumbbell Hammer lifts
Begin with both dumbbells by your sides. Either lift both weights at the same time or switch them alternately. Make sure that your wrists face straight up. Try to perform two sets of 10 to 15 reps each.
7. Crunches with Bosu ball
Weight training for old men is incomplete without ab exercises. Using a Bosu ball, perform crunches. Gently lay on your back and touch opposite hand to foot. Perform 50 crunches. Once you can do crunches with ease, move onto oblique twists.
Start with at least 20 to 30 sit-ups and gradually move to 100.
9. Bicycle crunches
Lay on your back and raise your bent knees to 90 degrees keeping your feet extended. Now, try to touch your left elbow to your right knee and keep alternating it. Perform one set of 50 bicycle crunches.
Also, read Why So Discreet About Your Age?
Last but not least, perform a plank for 45 seconds to one minute supporting yourself on dumbbells.
These were some of the best exercises for weight lifting for old guys. Now, let’s explore some fitness tips for older men.
Fitness tips for older men
1. Start with bodyweight exercises
As a beginner, lifting may seem too intense. Therefore, to learn proper form and prepare yourself for lifting, start with bodyweight exercises. The trick is that before you start lifting weights, you should be able to lift your own body weight. The best bodyweight exercises are squats, lunges, dips, push-ups, planks, step-ups, shoulder-presses, etc.
2. Set a goal
Weight training is a journey and a process. And, a process cannot be achieved without a goal. Therefore, set a personal target for yourself every week and try to achieve it. If you fail, try again the next day.
3. Strength train at least twice a week
After the age of 50, we tend to lose 2 per cent of muscle strength every year. Thus, if you want to ward off age-related muscle loss, make sure you are strength training at least twice a week.
4. Perform balance and flexibility exercises
Weight training for old men requires balance and flexibility exercises. These exercises improve mobility and the range of motion. One of the best balance and flexibility exercises is the single-leg balance reach. It will exercise the joints and address muscle imbalances or weak joints.
5. Never skip warm-up or recovery time
Older adults should take warm-up and cool-down exercises seriously. Remember that you heal and recover slowly than you used to decades ago. Therefore, be kind to yourself and allow yourself rest days. If you have just started weight training, it will take you time to ease into the routine.
So, don’t be hard on yourself, instead give your body time to adapt and recover from each workout.