The muscular system is a very important part of your body. Not only are muscles key to movement, but they also play a significant role in circulation, digestion and breathing. Whether you are an athlete or not, it’s essential that you take care of your muscles as part of your wider health regime. Not sure how to do this? Keep reading and this guide will provide you with some important information on muscle health.

Maintain a healthy weight  – Depending on your frame, age, height, sex and other characteristics, there is a healthy weight that you should maintain. If you are unsure what your recommended weight is, ask your doctor for guidance. If you are above the average weight for you, this will be putting strain on your muscles, forcing them to work much harder than they should need to. Being overweight can cause aches, pains and difficulty in movement. In the long-term this pressure can gradually weaken your muscles leading to further complications as the body ages.

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Image: Rikard Elofsson

If you are overweight, your doctor will be able to provide you with guidance on how to get to a healthier weight. The healthiest way to do this is to clean up your diet so you are consuming fewer calories and eating better ingredients, and increasing the amount of aerobic exercise you do.

Work on your posture – Bad posture also puts strain on your muscles. If you don’t stand or sit up straight, it prevents your bones and muscles from working together properly, which can lead to long-term problems with mobility.

Yoga is a very effective exercise for improving posture. The positions focus on elongating your spine, opening your chest, keeping your shoulders back and your head up. Practising yoga regularly will also make you more aware of when you are hunched, so that you can correct yourself throughout the day.

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Image: fsecart

Weight training – Lifting weights is one of the most effective ways to build up the strength of your muscles. The stronger your muscles are, the better your posture, coordination, flexibility and balance will be. This will also benefit you as you get older because, with improved mobility, you will be less prone to falls and injuries.

Weight training leads to muscle soreness. Unfortunately, there is no way of completely preventing this. Whether you have received an injury or not, getting a regular sports massage is beneficial for your muscles. A massage can relieve muscle swelling and tension and can improve your weight training performance. If you are new to this form of exercise, it is a good idea to book an initial session with a fitness instructor. They can talk you through the proper technique to use, how much weight you should be lifting and tell you the right kit or equipment to use.

As you can see, looking after your muscles is a very important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Not only does it improve your physical health right now, but it also makes your muscles stronger and, therefore, better prepared to cope as your body ages.