Adults lose approximately 1 percent of their muscle mass every year after age 45. This decrease in muscle mass can limit the day to day functioning of a senior citizen. Medical studies have repeatedly confirmed that strength training can counteract the sarcopenia (muscle loss) that occurs with aging.
The musculature of the upper body has 4 areas an exercise program should address: the chest, upper back, shoulders, and arms. When training the upper body it is important to consider that the shoulder girdle is an unstable area of the body and can be made vulnerable to injury particularly in seniors. Therefore it is not advisable that seniors engage in any weighted overhead pressing. As with any weight training routine paying close attention to keeping good form is the to priority
The routine laid out bellowed can be performed at home with the use of a rubber resistance band and a set of dumbbells. These exercise can be done in three sets of 12 repetitions 2 to 3 times a week.
Your warm up could be brisk five to ten minute walk, or marching in place. The goal is to engage in a low impact, repetitive lower body movement
Upright Chest Press using a Resistance band
- Wrap the band around something stable behind you
- hold handles in hands, tubing running along the inside of the arms (under the armpits), palms facing each other.
- Squeeze chest and press arms out in front of you. Return slowly to start and repeat.
Standing row using a Resistance band
- Wrap the resistance band around a sturdy object in front of you and stand or sit so that there’s tension on the band and the bend is about chest-height.
- Hold the handles in each hand, arms straight out in front with the palms facing each other.
- Contract the muscles between your shoulder blades to pull the elbows in towards the torso in a rowing motion.
- Keep the shoulders relaxed and down and only pull the elbows back to about torso level.
Front Dumbbell Raise
- Grasp dumbbells in both hands. Position dumbbells in front of upper legs with elbows straight or slightly bent.
- Raise dumbbells forward and upward with until upper arms are just level with your shoulders
- Lower slowly and repeat
Biceps Curl using resistance bands
- Stand with your legs and grip spaced shoulder width apart.
- Keep your abdominal muscles tight, chest up and elbows in.
- Your elbows should remain stable, in a fixed position, next to your sides.
- , lift the weight directly up until your forearm and upper arm form a 45 degree angle
- Reverse the motion back down slowly and repeat.
- Kneel over bench with arm supporting body. Keep your spine in neutral with your abs firm
- Grasp dumbbell. Position upper arm parallel to floor.
- Extend arm until it is straight.
- Return slowly and repeat. Continue with opposite arm.