Big Four

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Information about Big Four

Published on September 9, 2008

Author: mprine


The Big Four : The Big Four Strength Flexibility Endurance Balance Strength : Strength Strength involves resistance. It can include weights (free or machine), bands, or even body weight. Strength training will increase your ability to perform activities such as carrying groceries or moving heavier objects. If done at a high level, it may improve bone density, which can decrease the risk of osteoporsis In order to truly benefit, it needs to be done at a level which is challenging, though safe. Strength training should occur at least twice a week to be effective. A strenuous strength workout should have at least 24 to 48 hours for the muscles to recuperate. Flexibility : Flexibility Flexibility exercises are ones which move muscles and joints through the range of motion (known as ROM)/ Flexibility is important for proper muscle balance. It makes sure that all muscle groups are working efficiently, and may prevent injuries. It is no secret that flexibility decreases as we age. Performing flexibility exercises for every major area each day will slow the loss of flexibility. Injuries and disability may decrease flexibility. When performing flexibility exercises, move through your own range of motion, pushing just to the point of pain, but not through the pain. Endurance : Endurance Endurance exercises are ones that work the cardiovascular system (the heart and lungs). Endurance is necessary to keep moving throughout the day, to play with the dog and to participate in activities requiring long periods of movement. In order to fully benefit , you should devote a minimum of 30 minutes a day, most days of the week. Interestingly, research shows that the 30 minutes do not have to be all at once. You should do these exercises so they are comfortably hard. You should feel that you can talk, but not in full sentences. Balance : Balance As we age, our risk of falling rises. Falling is a concern of most people over the age of 60. For that reason, balance exercises are recommended. Balance exercises help us to recognize the way that muscles work together to keep us upright. They will increase your confidence, as well as enlighten you more about how your body works to produce movement. Balance exercises do not have to be fancy. However, safety is a key point when practicing your balance. It can be as simple as balancing on one foot with a chair within hand reach. Practicing balance almost every day will lead to improved balance and confidence. Putting it together : Putting it together Strength: Two to three days a week Flexibility: Every day, bring all muscles through the range of motion Endurance: 30 minutes, most every day, not necessarily at the same time, at a comfortably hard pace Balance: Every day, some sort of balance exercise, no more than 10 minutes.

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