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  • Sarah Chapman

Get strong and stay strong to give you more staying power!

The British Journal of Sports Medicine (BJSM) has produced a new editorial highlighting the positive effect regular participation in muscle strength activities (MSA) can have on lifespan.

Regular participation in MSA is associated with a variety of health outcomes including decreases in all-cause mortality rates and increases in physical functioning, cardiometabolic health and psychosocial well-being.

We know the importance of preserving muscular strength later in life is compelling. More recently clinicians have issued a ‘call to action’ for integrating strength-building exercise into the older persons medical management due to the overwhelming bodies of evidence highlighting its importance and the role it plays in good health.

Yet focusing exclusively on the later years of life overlooks the importance of building and maintaining a reserve of muscular strength earlier in life as a requisite baseline.

The editors of the BJSM editorial proposed the construct of strengthspan which refers to a quantitative continuous metric of physical strength (eg, 1-repetition maximum, grip strength, functional strength tests) over a lifespan contributes to improved health outcomes and added years of life.

By expanding the strengthspan with MSA at every stage of life, individuals may not only live longer but may be more likely to move independently, function safely and perform a range of physical tasks effectively throughout the lifespan.

While healthspan broadly encompasses various aspects of health and well-being, strengthspan is more narrowly focused on muscular strength and physical function. Healthy ageing includes building a reserve of muscular strength early in life, maintaining activity-induced gains in muscular strength throughout adulthood, and reducing the magnitude and rate of decline.

The moral is GET STRONG and STAY STRONG to give you more STAYING POWER!

Would you be interested in taking part in a strength based exercise class? Please get in touch with us if you would and if there's enough interest it is something we could look to provide. You can email or call 01932 645320.

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