Written by Phil Horton, Country Director UK, miha bodytec
I think it’s fair to say that, in 2021, most people understand the importance of cardiovascular training for their health and wellbeing. That’s not to say those same people regularly undertake cardiovascular training of course, but a pop survey would likely reveal people know, to some degree, it’s important.
Can the same be said about the vital importance of strength training? It was refreshing to see the Chief Medical Officer’s report in 2019 highlighting strength training as we age, and updating recommendations to two strength sessions a week for adults.
The importance of building strength cannot be underestimated, for protecting against a range of chronic conditions, for balance, for ensuring we age well. Meeting the guidelines for strength training can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by 40%, coronary heart disease by 35% and depression by 30%. Strength training can also delay sarcopenia – the natural decline in muscle mass. After the age 30, you begin to lose as much as 3% to 5% skeletal muscle mass per decade.
ukactive released the Life in Our Years report this week, again shining a spotlight on strength as we age, yet it’s still often forgotten. Ask any gym owner what kit a new member says they are familiar with, and want as part of their programme, and few would say the strength area. Perhaps because many still find the thought of strength training intimidating? For whatever reason, despite the recommendations, the message hasn’t proliferated as we might have hoped.
EMS Personal Training offers everyone, from the high performing gym goer to the unconditioned, to postpartum mothers, those who are nervous about the gym and everyone in-between, access to strength training. Whole Body Electro-Muscular Stimulation mimics the natural signal sent by the brain to the muscles, but more powerfully. In just one 20-minute EMS PT session per week, combining ‘free will contractions’ – slow controlled body movements with an external stimulus from the device, can activate up to 98% of muscle fibres. With conventional training methods, people only activate around 60% but the overall efficiency of EMS PT is the key. Just 20 minutes once a week is as effective as two HIT sessions a week!
Early indications from a Cardiac Rehab study miha bodytec is currently conducting in partnership with the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, is showing significant strength gains but without the hypertrophy. This is particular important to this cohort and relates to a lot of gym goers that want tone and strength but not the mass!
Could this be the way to encourage more people to add strength training into their lives and to make it more mainstream? Because it really needs to be. Strength training improves functional fitness, reduces risk of injury, increases muscular power, leading to a higher metabolism and decreasing the risk of osteoporosis, which will affect one in three women and one in five men in later life. Strength training has even been shown to boost your cognitive function and enhance physiology to make the immune system more robust. The benefits tend to be pretty universal – why are we not shouting about them more?
If you are keen to test the benefits of EMS Training for yourself, book a free session here