I truly believe everyone should be doing some type of strength of training, and strength is the foundation of all programs at Relentless Strength & Conditioning. It doesn’t matter if you’re a young kid learning proper movement patterns, a college athlete preparing for your season, or an adult looking to improve your quality of life. Everyone should be building strength. To put it very simply, strength is the foundation of daily movement.
Why we believe everyone should be strength training.
First off, it will improve your day to day life. At some point each day, whether or not you even realize it, you are required to squat, push, pull or perform a hip hinge. I’m not talking about with a barbell either. I’m talking about picking up your kids, bending down to load the dishwasher, or push the grocery cart around the store (and if you eat like I do that gets heavy fast). Any of these activities sound familiar? How well do you perform those movements? Do you have nagging low back pain every time you bend down? Poor muscular strength can seriously impact your quality of life. The reality is thirty minutes on the elliptical isn’t going to help you get out of bed as you get older, building strength will.
What strength looks like to us.
When we say everyone should be strength we’re not talking working to a one rep max every day. For everyone it will be different. It could be as simple as body weight movements such as air squats and pushups ,but the ability to move ones own body weight can not be ignored. When working with athletes and adults at RSC we use a really simple progression and screening process to see where an athlete is at. To introduce strength training we start with bodyweight movements. For squatting we start with air squats, then we use kettlebells, typically a goblet squat, and lastly we get to a barbell. This is an extreme oversimplification but the point is strength comes in many forms and is suitable for ages and abilities.
For athletes it’s a no brainer.
Want to get faster? Great, get stronger. There is a time and a place for footwork drills and speed ladders but if you're looking to improve your speed and quickness - which the majority of people we work with are - strength training should be your main focus. Strength exercises like power cleans recruit fast twitch muscle fibers which will lead to an improvement in overall speed and power. We are not anti footwork drills and speed ladders by any means but they are complement to our programs, not the main focus. One way we incorporate them at RSC is to take an X-WOD approach, combining strength movements with plyometric and footwork drills to improve an athlete's speed.
Injury prevention for all.
Beyond building speed, strength reduces your risk of injury. This is a huge reason why everyone, not just athletes should be strength training. Especially adults. For example, if you have a weak posterior chain and abdominal muscles you’re likely to develop back injuries and chronic back pain. Or, weaknesses in your rotator cuff will lead to shoulder injuries. Targeting these areas through compound lifts such as deadlifts and presses will drastically reduce your chance of injury.
As most of you know, muscle mass starts to deteriorate as you age, especially after 40. You also lose your ability to use your muscles efficiently as you age. This gives you a greater risk of injury during daily activities. Strength training can maintain the muscle mass you already have and reverse the process of age related muscle inefficiency.
The bottom line is strength training will improve your overall quality of life, both physically and mentally. Strength training is fun. There can be a lot of variety to it, the results can be instant (you’ll feel stronger each week), it’ll decrease your stress and boost your mood.
Interested in learning more about strength training, or general fitness? Contact us today with any questions, and we'll also give you a free sample workout.