Exercise Snacking: A Simple Approach To Aging That Can Actually Improve Muscle Function

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It’s no secret that finding time to exercise gets more difficult with age. As professional, family, and personal responsibilities stack up, it becomes more and more challenging to find time to get to the gym or exercise.

As part of the aging process, our performance physical therapy patients also tend to lose muscle mass and function. One well-known combatant of muscle loss is resistance training, though it does require access to both exercise equipment and the time to work out.

If you find yourself struggling to get to the gym as you’re getting older, there’s good news! A recent study from The Centre for Sport in Chesterfield, UK, concluded that short bouts of exercise spread throughout the day are an effective method to improve muscle function in a time-efficient manner.

“Exercise snacking,” as the study coined, is the process of breaking down exercise into short sessions throughout the day. During the 28-day study, individuals doing a twice daily home-based exercise snacking program improved their lower limb muscle function and size compared to a control group. In addition, not only did their maximum leg pressing power increase, but those who followed the exercise snacking program also improved their 60-second sit-stand scores.

Although the study is still being examined, the data suggests that “exercise snacking,” or short bouts of exercise, may be a promising strategy to improve muscle function in older adults. Something as simple as a short walk could do the trick.

If you often struggle to find time to exercise, “exercise snacking” is a super time-efficient method to combat the side effects of aging while staying in shape.

For a more personalized approach, our virtual physical therapy team in Chevy Chase can help! Contact us today for a free consultation.

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