Strength Training Is Essential for Women’s Health — Why Aren’t More of Us Doing It?

“Anyone who is still new to strength training should start slowly and focus on proper form to avoid injuries and build a solid foundation,” says Putsov. “You can begin with bodyweight exercises such as squats, lunges, and pushups, which help develop strength and stability without the need for equipment.”

In fact, when it comes to getting started, Zermeño suggests the three S’s: simple, schedule, support. “Keep it simple. Repeat those basic exercises and you will see results,” she says. “Squat, hinge, push, pull, and plank. If it looks like a circus act, you’re doing too much.”

A good rule of thumb is to create a circuit that involves one upper body exercise, one lower body exercise, and one core exercise. “Pick one exercise from each category below and aim to complete three rounds of 10 reps each,” says Zermeño.

Lower body exercises: Squats, lunges, glute bridge, hip thrust, good mornings, single-leg deadlifts, step-ups

Upper body exercises: Push-ups, bear-crawls, triceps dips, superman, downward dog to the plank

Core exercises: Forearm planks, side planks, burpees, crunches, leg raises, Pilates teaser or roll-ups, bicycle crunch

As you become comfortable with these movements, Mara suggests progressing to resistance bands in the following weeks and/or months. “They are very affordable and versatile, which is perfect for beginners,” she says.

Once you have a steady routine of strength training and feel confident in your form and notice improvements in strength, you can start implementing light weights like dumbbells or kettlebells, and building from there.

Consider a trainer-led program.

If you’re really feeling stuck — and concerned about injury — Smith suggests starting a program with a trainer. “Whether that’s an app like Alo Moves where you can work out with me, or hiring a trainer in your local area to help with the basics, it’s important to work with a trainer you trust,” she says.

“Working with a certified personal trainer is a great way to receive that personalised guidance and feedback, even if it’s just for a few sessions,” Zhang agrees.

Smith’s suggestion? Alo Moves’ legs-and-glutes series 10 Days to Stronger Legs. “You can do it at home, and I always say basic is best,” she says. “Do not overcomplicate working out, especially if you are new!”

Remain realistic.

This isn’t common advice, but it should be: Don’t compare your gains to anyone else’s.

“Remember that everybody is different. Trying to look just like an influencer or a celebrity is unrealistic,” Zermeño says. “Your body and their body are not built the same, and you can’t train genetics. Set a goal that is realistic to you and be happy in your own skin.”

Listen to your body.

“Don’t forget to listen to your body and progress at your own pace,” Zhang concludes. “It’s all about enjoying the journey and celebrating your progress along the way.”

Shop everything you need to start strength training below. Your body will thank you.

Bala Bangles Weight For Hands & Feet

Adjustable Dumbbell Set of 2, 4 in 1 Free Weights Dumbbells Set

Gaiam Resistance Bands

Danielle Sinay is the associate beauty editor at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @daniellesinay.

This article originally appeared on GLAMOUR US.


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