Building stronger muscles is an important part of overall health. When your muscles are
strong, you can carry heavy grocery bags more easily, pick up children without
feeling as much strain, or do more downhill ski runs before you
get too tired and have to stop.
Making your muscles stronger includes:
- Resistance training. This helps build muscles through regular use, especially when your muscles have to work against something.
- Strengthening your
core. This helps build
the muscles around your belly and back (trunk). This is called
core stability. It can help you have better posture and balance, and help
protect you from injury.
- Fitness: Increasing Core Stability
Experts advise people to do exercises to strengthen muscles at least 2 times a week. Be sure to work the major muscle groups: legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms.
Examples of resistance-training exercises include lifting weights, doing push-ups, or using elastic bands.
Stretching for flexibility
Flexibility means being able to move your
joints and muscles through their full range of motion.
As you become more flexible, you will find it easier to reach
things on high shelves, to look under a bed, or perhaps to tie your shoes. You
will also have a better sense of balance and coordination.
To stay flexible,
stretch all your major groups of muscles. These
include the muscles of your arms, your back,
your hips, the front and back of your
thighs, and your calves.
you get started with flexibility and stretching, begin slowly, and increase your
efforts bit by bit. You can measure your progress with
flexibility by noticing how much farther you can do each stretch. Can you
stretch farther each day than you
could when you started? If so, your flexibility is getting
Do your stretching and
flexibility exercises in addition to your aerobic and strength-building