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Exercise Frequency Is More Important than Duration

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Do you have a goal of exercising more this year? Unfortunately, many people break their New Year’s fitness goals within the first month.

The best way to achieve success in building muscle strength is to commit to doing a few minutes of strength exercises each day.


Frequency of Exercise Can Improve Muscle Strength

According to a study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, people can improve muscle strength with just a single muscle contraction five days per week. Another study in the same journal found small amounts of exercise throughout the week produced better results than one extended workout, even if the overall duration of physical activity was the same.

The research team instructed participants to do 30 arm curls weekly for four weeks. One group did 30 curls once weekly, and another did six curls five days weekly. The group that did all the curls in one day did not increase their muscle strength, but the group that spread out their exercises improved muscle strength by 10 percent.

Turn daily activities into exercise

Experts suggest adults get 150 minutes of moderate exercise every week. Unfortunately, if you work a full-time job, it can be challenging to find time to exercise. However, you can incorporate exercise into your workday. Here are some easy ways to sneak in some exercise at work:
    1. Do eccentric activities in your office. “Eccentric” movements lengthen and activate muscles in the body, and they can lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Everyone sits down on a chair daily. By sitting down slowly in your chair, you will do at least 10 eccentric contractions that extend the knee joint.
    2. Take the stairs. Instead of waiting for the elevator, take the stairs. You can build leg muscle and increase your heart rate at the same time.
    3. Take a walk during lunch. Use your lunch hour to take a walk outside. In addition to the benefits of increased muscle mass, you will get a daily dose of vitamin D that will boost your mood.
    4. Use a headset. Instead of sitting during a conference call, you can move around your office or down the hallway using a headset or headphones.
    5. Keep weights at your desk. Purchase a set of hand weights that you can keep under your desk. Take breaks throughout the day and do some biceps curls, lateral raises or triceps kickbacks.

    Talk to your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine

    Before starting a new exercise regimen, talk to your doctor for recommendations and suggestions. Workouts will not benefit you if you get injured or develop joint pain. If you are looking for an orthopedist, we can assist you. Our centers are nationwide, and our friendly staff can help you make an appointment.

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