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A Dive into Resistance Exercise with the Help of Mbody - High-tech Wearable

As we age, our bodies undergo significant changes, and one of the most notable is the decline in muscle strength and function. This decline, known as sarcopenia, not only affects our ability to perform daily tasks but also puts us at risk for various health issues. However, there's good news – research suggests that regular resistance exercise training (RET) can help counteract sarcopenia and its effects, improving our quality of life as we age.

Mbody shorts measuring EMG are easy to use in gym to optimize strength training.

 But here's the catch – the way our muscles respond to exercise changes as we get older. Understanding these changes is crucial for maximizing the benefits of exercise, particularly in older adults. That's where electromyography (EMG) comes into play. Wearable EMG - like Myontec Mbody shorts - allows us to measure muscle activity from the big leg muscles anywhere, anytime, giving us valuable insights into how our muscles respond to different types of exercise.


In a study done in University of Birmingham, researchers set out to explore how age and exercise mode affect quadriceps muscle EMG activity in both younger and older adults. They compared traditional machine-based RET with two alternative methods – elastic resistance bands (EB) and bodyweight (BW) exercises. The goal was to determine which approach elicited the most effective muscle activation and whether age played a role in the response.

Strength exercises with elastic resistance bands are as effective as machine-based exercises at any age! 

The findings were intriguing. It turns out that EB-RET produced similar muscle activation to traditional machine-based RET, regardless of age. This suggests that elastic resistance bands could be a viable alternative for older adults looking to maintain or improve muscle mass and function without the need for expensive gym equipment.


On the other hand, bodyweight exercises showed slightly lower muscle activation compared to the other methods, particularly in older adults. However, this doesn't mean that BW exercises are ineffective. In fact, they still provided a significant stimulus for muscle activation, especially when compared to everyday activities like walking and stair climbing.


Speaking of which, the study also looked at how activities of daily living impact muscle activation. Unsurprisingly, older adults exhibited greater muscle activation during daily activity compared to younger adults. This highlights the increased effort required for everyday tasks as we age and underscores the importance of maintaining muscle strength and function through targeted exercise.

Mbody gives immediate biofeedback when optimizing muscle strength training or comparing gym tools - but can also monitor daily activity. 

Overall, the study sheds light on the nuances of muscle activation in response to different types of exercise and age-related changes. It emphasizes the importance of tailored exercise programs that take into account individual needs and capabilities. By understanding how our muscles respond to exercise, we can optimize training strategies to promote healthy aging and improve overall well-being.

Free Mbody Live app as biofeedback tool.

So, whether you're hitting the gym or incorporating resistance exercises into your daily routine, remember – every move counts when it comes to preserving muscle strength and function as you age.

The article is based on the research Quadriceps muscle electromyography activity during physical activities and resistance exercise modes in younger and older adults by Ryan N. Marshalla, Paul T. Morgana, Eduardo Martinez-Valdesa and Leigh Breena in 2020. Read the full study here. DOI: 10.1016/j.exger.2020.110965

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