T Nation

Training a Middle Aged Woman


#1

Hey guys, so I'm not a certified personal trainer but I will be training one of my friends moms as a gift I promised a while back.
I have a lot of experience exercising, and a lot of experience coaching younger people, but I've never coached someone older before.
I looking for any input or advice.

The lady I will be training is interested in becoming stronger and more conditioned. However, she is training to lose fat essentially, not for athletics. I was thinking of having her do a basic lifting program with an A day Bday type thing 3 times a week with 3 sets of 20 reps for every exercise, since she has never lifted before. Then, two days a week I would take her through a circuit I created.

What do you guys think? Keep in mind it can't be too intense and she is just starting out.

Thanks!


#2

OK. Ill Bite.

Two questions,

  1. How much training experience do you have.

  2. How old is the women in question.


#3

3 sets of 20 reps, really? For someone untrained, at any age, that set-up is going to be painful and unproductive, unless it's rehab or bodyweight exercises.

Ask yourself, what is her current physical condition, what is her mobility/flexibility like? Can you assess her structural imbalances and help to correct them? I am going to assume this woman is 40+ and untrained. Unless she is already in great condition from previous training, you may end up harming her more than helping.

I'd suggest she see a professional trainer, get an assessment and a program, then you could help her in the gym to perform the movements.


#4

I think this is exactly what she needs:

It's a strength training program for a beginner, also geared to her fat loss goals.


#5

people tend to make things overly complicated. You train this woman the way you would train any beginner. But, her being a woman, she's probably not interested in getting super strong, she just wants to look better. id forget doing free weight bench press or military presses. Id just stick with hammar strength machines. but just keep it really simple. simple is always the best way to go. id use dumbells for curls and maybe some lateral raises.

Upper body one day, lower body the next workout. let her get used to the movements, make sure she does them correctly, make sure her form is good. then, gradually add some weight.


#6

Suityman, we really apologize for roguevampire. He's a known troll, so don't take anything he says seriously.


#7

I agree about the movement assessment.

Squat, deadlift, lunge, horizontal / vertical push / pull.

Stuff is probably required in order for her to learn to do these movements safely.
They are movements that people should be able to do.
Unless they are happy about eventually breaking a hip because they can't balance themselves, or hurting their back picking up their shopping, or needing to use their arms to pull themselves up off the toilet, or hurting their backs putting tins of food up on the taller shelf.

Glute activation, ab activation, shoulder stability, hip mobility etc.

If you know about this stuff then sweet. But then if you know about this stuff you probably wouldn't be asking us...


#8

with respect to 3 sets of 20 wtf???

i've heard that 8-12 reps is a middle-ground between strength, hypertrophy, and muscular endurance. which is why it is a rep range that is often given to people who just start out training before they start to develop more precise goals.

sets of 20 will train muscular endurance at the expense of strength.

pink dumbbells ftw???


#9

known troll?? really now?? What exactly did I say thats inaccurate. I've been lifting probably longer than anyone on this site, with the size and strength to go with it. if thats a troll, then I'll gladly be a troll.


#10

Now I'm sorry that I even posted on this thread. Because it was getting ready to be bumped to the second page to oblivion.