Kids and weights — do they go together? Unless those weights are book bags, the most common answer is “no.” New studies, however, are pointing to a different answer.
By participating in resistance training, children can essentially get a leg-up on muscular fitness early in life. And, even though most parents know this, plenty of myths are still out there. We all agree that physical activity is good for our kids, but once weights come into the picture, hesitation sets in.
Aside from improving muscular strength, resistance training affords children the opportunity to practice movement skills and establish long-term physical development.
If you’re still on the fence about youth resistance training, let us dispel some rumors for you. Here are 5 myths you might have heard:
1. Resistance training can stunt child growth
Why it’s false: There’s no scientific evidence to support that resistance training stunts growth. If well-designed and supervised, resistance training can actually improve bone growth and development.
2. It’s unsafe
Why it’s false: Like any other intense physical activity, resistance training is only unsafe if it’s unsupervised. You wouldn’t let your child practice resistance training without an experienced coach just like you wouldn’t let your child play contact football without a helmet. Although accidents can happen, the key is in providing qualified instruction.
3. Youth need to be at least 12 years old to lift weight
Why it’s false: The only true requirement for youth resistance training is the ability to listen and follow instruction. When children are ready for organized sports — which usually happens at around age 7 or 8 — then they are ready to to be exposed to resistance training in a safe environment.
4. It makes girls bulky
Why it’s false: The only true effect of resistance training in young females is getting stronger — and that’s a good thing. While girls and boys react differently to this type of training, there is little evidence that resistance training will make girls bulky. Especially if the training is light and done daily, the outcome will be ideal.
5. Resistance training is only for young athletes
Why it’s false: Regular practice in resistance training can benefit any child — even those who are not on an athletic team. Resistance training builds strength for healthier body composition and improved physical skills. In fact, because the benefits are so many, resistance training is an encouraged behavior for children.
We hope this helped dispel some of the myths about youth resistance training. If you have any more questions, reach out to us and we will be more than happy to tell you about our programs and how they can improve your child’s physical strength.
(Content curated from this article)