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Strong Reasons to Start Strength Training

Strength training — whether you use weight training machines, elastic resistance bands, dumbbells, barbells or simply the weight of your body — offers many health benefits.

The January issue of Mayo Clinic Health Letter lists reasons why it’s good to add strength training to your exercise regimen. Benefits include:

* Increasing bone density: This reduces the risk and impact of osteoporosis.

* Reducing the risk of falling: Strength training contributes to better balance, coordination and agility.

* Maintaining a healthy weight: Pound for pound, muscle burns three times more calories than fat. Increased muscle mass enables your body to burn calories more quickly and efficiently.

* Alleviating chronic back pain: People often experience less pain after strengthening their back and abdominal muscles.

* Making everyday tasks easier: Housework, mowing the lawn or carrying groceries takes less effort. Strong muscles mean you’re less likely to injure muscles, tendons or ligaments.

Talk to your doctor about appropriate strengthening exercises, especially if you have osteoporosis.


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