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Is Long-Term Heavy Weightlifting Dangerous?

author image Bobby R. Goldsmith
Bobby R. Goldsmith is a writer and editor with over 12 years of experience in journalism, marketing and academics. His work has been published by the Santa Fe Writers Project, "DASH Literary Journal," the "Inland Valley Daily Bulletin" and WiseGEEK.
Is Long-Term Heavy Weightlifting Dangerous?
Long-term heavy lifting isn't dangerous if done correctly. Photo Credit: Digital Vision/Digital Vision/Getty Images

Strength training with heavy weights can be an effective way to add lean muscle mass and develop a physique bursting with functional strength. With age, certain aspects of heavy weight training may pose concerns, especially with the effects on bone health, diminishing muscle tissue and impact on the joints. However, when done carefully, correctly and consistently, heavy weight training is perfectly safe as a long-term fitness regimen.

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Safety in Consistency

The key to making heavy weight training safe as a long-term program is consistency. If you frequently take extensive breaks from a heavy-lifting program -- for months at a time -- you will have difficulty assuaging many of the deleterious effects. The safest way to lift long term is to do it continuously. This develops an increasing base of foundational strength and provides you the benefits of increasing bone density and strengthening joints and tendons over the long term. Also, ensuring that you get adequate rest periods during your weekly workout schedule will go a long way toward mitigating any dangerous impacts to your health.

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