Older adults represent the fastest emerging market in both fitness and rehabilitation. According to the National Institute on Aging, the older population will double between 2011 and 2030 when older adults will represent 25% of American society. The majority of these people will be dealing with at least one chronic health condition, which can be managed or reversed with physical activity. Exercise training is a highly effective way to decrease or manage the risk of chronic disease or disability, including fall prevention.
TRX Suspension Training can be a powerful tool to use with even the most limited older clients. A recent research study conducted by Dr. Christian Thompson at the University of San Francisco determined that the TRX Suspension Training system is a safe, effective and enjoyable exercise modality to utilize in older adults who were deemed to be at risk for an accidental fall. This research, which has been peer-reviewed by the American College of Sports Medicine, was an eight-week training program using TRX Suspension Training to enhance functional fitness in a group of older adults who had never used the TRX Suspension Trainer before. The TRX was used for mobility exercises for the ankle, hip, thoracic spine and shoulder; muscle strengthening exercises for the lower and upper body; and dynamic balance/gait enhancement exercises. Exercise volume and complexity progressed at regular intervals throughout the training period. Functional fitness outcomes were measured pre and post test by Functional Reach Test, Timed Up-and-Go Test, and 30 Second Chair Stand Test.
Some of the exercises used in the study include:
TRX Overhead Squat
TRX Mid Row
TRX Chest Press
Examples of these exercises can be seen in this video, done for a previous blog post on osteoporosis.
Regardless of your age or ability level, the TRX is an adaptable and effective exercise device. Have you used the TRX to train older adult clients? If so, share your results below.
All clients should consult with a physician or physical therapist regarding specific limitations and restrictions prior to beginning this or any exercise program.