The Benefits of Strength Training For Women.
Sophie – Huddle Fitness Coach and Female Personal Trainer in Cheltenham:
I have been training people in the gym for 12 years and starting to see strength training and the benefits it has for women slowly becoming more accepted and women being less scared to give it a go. There was always such a fear that a woman would become ‘bulky’ or ‘masculine’ when they strength trained but it is not the case. Weight training has been a huge part of my life and I love it and miss it when I don’t do it. I notice a difference in my body aesthetically and a decline in my mood when I have taken time away from it. You don’t need to be lifting big weights to be strength training, but just challenge your body and the weights will increase naturally – and you’ll feel great for it.
Increased bone strength & health. Weight training strengthens our muscles but also improves our bone density. When we strength train and put our bodies and bones under tension, our bones grow stronger and denser to do the exercise and consequently reduce the risk of fractures and broken bones and preventing health issues like Osteoporosis. Strength training makes us strong and stand tall, so improves poor posture and helps to reduce any back pain. (Correct posture when training and ensuring we lift our weights correctly is important, so always ask for advice before starting a new strength training programme)
Increased strength. Strength not size. So often I’ve had clients or people in my classes who worry they are going to bulk and look masculine lifting weights – you won’t. Men have higher testosterone levels than women, so they will naturally bulk more but for women, strength training defines and tones our muscles and makes us stronger for gym work, working life, parent life and everything in between. Strength training is the best way to tackle some of the most disliked areas of women’s bodies, like arms or top of thighs and bums. Lifting a heavier weight for less reps and more sets (for example, 8 repetitions for 4 sets) will have more of an impact that doing 15 reps with a lighter weight several times a week.
Reduce stress and better mood. Sells itself. Exercise for me is so important for my mood and my mental wellbeing. Exercise in general releases endorphins and serotonin – the feel good hormone. When we exercise and when it’s finished (especially when it’s finished!) we feel good. Strength training gives you a confidence that sitting on a static bike or doing a 100 ab crunches on your bedroom floor won’t do. (Done it, tested it!) Strength training makes your clothes sit better on your body, you feel more confident and you stand that little bit taller. It helps to reduce stress as we release those feel good hormones and improves a woman’s self – confidence.
Great for burning fat & calories. The majority of my clients and class goers are looking to lose body fat. When we strength train we build lean muscle which increases our metabolism so we keep burning calories for longer – even when you’ve stopped exercising! Strength training paired with some high intensity exercises will be so beneficial for burning those calories and moving some of that stubborn fat than spending 30 minutes on a piece of cardio equipment.
At The Huddle we design all our sessions to get the most out of all our clients. The sessions are designed to burn calories, increase strength & endurance and all done safely causing no harm to our client or class goers. We now run two Huddle for Her sessions a week (Wednesday 18.05 – 1855 & Saturday 08.00 – 09.00). These sessions are for women only and are designed to increase strength, fitness and confidence in the gym. There are women in these classes who have been gym goers for years and there are women who come who have never been to a gym or haven’t been to a gym or done strengthening exercises for a long term.