ACSM Quantity and Quality of Exercise
|Achieving Health and Fitness
The following lists include recommended quantity and quality of exercise for achieving fitness in adults 62.
Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Body Composition Guidelines
- Frequency of training sessions: 3 - 5 days per week. This does not mean one cannot or should not choose some form of physical activity on non-training session days. Examples: gardening and yard work, walking the dog, etc.
- Intensity of training: 65 - 90% of maximum heart rate (HRmax) or 55 - 64% HRmax for those who are especially unfit. Rating of perceived exertion (RPE) may be useful as an adjunct to percent HRmax. Further, certain populations may present confounds that make HRmax imposable to measure or predict. Generally, RPE should range from 11 - 14.
- Duration of training: 20 - 60 minutes of continuous or intermittent (minimum of 10-minute bouts accumulated throughout the day) aerobic activity. Duration is dependent on intensity, therefore, lower intensity activities should be conducted over longer time periods (≥ 30 minutes) and higher levels of activity should be maintained for 20 minutes or longer. Moderate intensity over longer duration is recommended for adults not training for athletic competition.
Muscular Strength and Endurance, Body Composition, and Flexibility Guidelines
- Mode of activity: activities that use large muscle groups and can be maintained continuously. Such modes of activity should be rhythmical and aerobic in nature. Examples: walking, hiking, running/jogging, cycling, cross-country skiing, aerobic dance/group exercise.
- Resistance training sessions:
Frequency of training: 2 - 3 days per week
Sets and Repetitions: Multiple-set regimens may provide greater benefit if time allows. Most people should complete 8 - 12 repetitions of each exercise. It may be appropriate for frail individuals to complete 10 - 15 repetitions at a lower relative weight.
Resistance training should be progressive, individualized, and provide stimulus to all major muscle groups.
- Flexibility training sessions:
Flexibility exercises should stretch the major muscle groups and be performed a minimum of 2 - 3 days per week and should incorporate appropriate static (held 10 - 30 seconds) and/or dynamic techniques. The rational behind flexibility training is to develop and maintain range of motion (ROM).
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