Workouts boost muscle strength in kids

Although strength training was long thought to pose an injury risk for school-age children and adolescents, studies in recent years have shown there is actually no greater risk than with other types of exercise or sports — and in some cases, less.

In addition, benefits in the form of decreased body fat, increased bone density, and boosting performance and limiting injury risk in other sports, generally outweighed any risks.

In a study reported in Pediatrics, Michael Behringer and colleagues from the German Sport University Cologne combined the results of 42 unpublished studies to confirm this training does increase children’s strength safely. Strength training can be done using free weights, exercise machines, elastic bands or the body’s own resistance.

‘Green’ exercise

Meanwhile, another research has suggested that just five minutes of outdoor activity — such as exercising in a park, working in a backyard garden or walking on a nature trail — is good for the brain, with tangible benefits for mental health. It indicated that physical activity in natural areas, known as “green” exercise, could lead to improvements in mental health.

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