If qualified trainers and age appropriate equipment and safe training environment are not available than youths should not do resistance exercise due to the possibility for risk of injuries.
Facts on Fitness of Teens and Children
- Almost half of the children aged 12 to 20 years old are not active on a daily basis.
- As children grow by age and school grade their sports participation actually declines.
- Among all high school students only 20 minutes a day at five days a week are they physical active in physical education classes.
Benefits of Physical Activity for Teens and Children
- Physical activity aides in building strong bones, muscles and joints.
- Aides in obesity by controlling weight, building lean muscles and reduction of fat.
- Provides prevention or delays in development of high blood pressure and can aide in reducing high blood pressure in some teens with hypertension.
How to Start Strength Training for Teens and Children
- Coaches and personal trainers are great resources to use for your children. They are trained in the area of youth strength training. They can develop a safe and effective program geared to age, size, skills and interests. Check your local community such as the YMCA for programs which are geared to the child's age.
- Have them warm up their muscles and reduce injury. Encourage them to spend around five or ten minutes before strength training session doing simple things like aerobics, walking or even jumping rope.
- Children are able to lift adult size weights providing they are light enough. Usually repetitive sets of 12 to 15 is adequate. Body weight exercises like push-ups can also be used and are just as effective.
- Do not center your attention on how much they can lift. Instead center on correct form and technique of the exercise. Gradually they can add resistance and number of repetitions as they grow older.
Make sure they rest one complete day in between each muscle group.
Strength Training Exercises
Beginning Body Weight Exercises:
- Push-ups, chin-ups, pull-ups (palms facing)
- Squats and squat thrusts
- Lunges, dips and crunches
- Grip strength
- Hanging on the chin up bar
- Rope climbing
Advanced Body Weight Exercises:
- Hand Stand push-up
- One leg squats
- One arm push-ups
- One arm chin-ups, pull-ups (palms facing)
- Burpees (squat thrusts with a clap)
- Grip strength
- Rope climbing using arms only
- Wringing water out of a wet towel
Just remember that strength training is totally safe and increases strength while providing health benefits to overall fitness and health.
Detroit Alternative Medicine Examiner Debbie Nicholson is currently writing articles, working on numerous e-zines and several companies of her own.
Examiner.com is the inside source for everything local. Powered by Examiners, the largest pool of knowledgeable and passionate contributors in the world, we provide unique and original content to enhance life in your local city wherever that may be.