Here are some tips for a safe, successful and effective strength-training program

Resistance training or strength training classes will challenge your muscles by using a stronger counterforce such as pushing against walls, lifting dumbbells or pulling on a resistance bracelet. Muscles become stronger by using heavier weights and increasing resistance. This type of exercise can increase muscle mass, tone muscles, and strengthen bones. You can also use it to maintain your strength for daily activities like lifting groceries, climbing stairs or getting on the bus.

According to the current guidelines for physical activity, strengthening exercises should be done at least twice per week for all major muscle groups (legs and hips, backs, chests, abdomens, shoulders, and arms). Although one set is usually 8-12 repetitions of the same movement per session, some evidence suggests that more than one set may prove to be effective. Between strength training sessions, your muscles must rest for at least 48 hours.

These seven tips will help you keep your strength training safe, effective, and enjoyable.

Warm up, then cool down for 5-10 minutes. Walking is a great way to warm up. Stretching is a great way to cool off.

You should be focusing on form and not weight. Move smoothly and align your body correctly. Poor form can lead to injuries and slow gains. Experts recommend starting off with very little weight or no weight when learning a strength training program. Focus on slow, controlled lifts and equally controlled descends while focusing on a specific muscle group.

You can control your pace and not lose momentum. To illustrate, you can count to 3 while lowering your weight. Hold the weight and then count to 3, while lifting it back to its starting position.

During your workouts, pay attention to your breathing. As you lift, push, pull, or pull against resistance, exhale and inhale.

You can keep your muscles challenged by gradually increasing weight or resistance. It all depends on what exercise you are doing. You should choose a weight that is sufficient to tire the target muscle or muscles in the last two repetitions, but still allows you to keep good form. You can do the final two reps if you are unable to. If that happens, try a lighter weight. If it feels too easy, add weight (1 to 2 pounds for the arms and 2 to 5 for the legs) or add an additional set to your workout (upto three sets). Remember that weight gain should not be difficult. The targeted muscles should feel exhausted by the end of the third set.

Keep to your schedule. It is best to work all major muscles at least twice a week. You have the option of doing a full-body strength training twice or three times per week. Or, you can break down your strength workout into lower- and upper-body components. If that is the case, make sure to perform each component at least twice a week.

Give your muscles some time to recover. Small tears are caused by strength training. These tears aren’t dangerous, but they can make your muscles stronger. Before you start your next strength training session, give your muscles 48 hours to rest.

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