May 24, 2024

Girls, You Need to Lift Weights! By Maggie Ayre

5 Reasons Every Teen Girl Should be Familiar with a Heavy Pair of Dumbbells

I’m afraid stories that lifting weights will make you bulk up simply aren’t true. Our bodies simply don’t contain enough testosterone for that to happen. So let’s lift weights for these 5 awesome reasons instead.


Lifting weights burns fat. If you’re looking to slim down then you must lift weights. Lifting weights raises the body’s metabolism forcing it to burn more fat.

Lifting weights develops strong bones. We need strong bones to support strong muscles. Lifting weights increases bone density. Strong bones are less likely to fracture or break plus you’re reducing the risk of osteoporosis as you age.

Strength training increases energy levels. As your metabolism increases so will your energy levels. You may find that you’re eating more too but if you’re not gaining fat and what you’re eating is good for you who’s complaining?

Strength training decreases stress levels. Lifting weights leads to an amazing series of events.
Firstly, exercising increases your dopamine levels making you happier. Secondly, your confidence soars as you realise how strong you are and the exercises you can do. Subsequently, your confidence in all areas of life shoots up and with this your stress levels decrease markedly.

Lifting weights increases your strength. OK, so I know stating lifting weights makes you stronger is pretty much common sense but it still needs to be said. What makes it cooler is that at the same time as your strength increases your co-ordination and spatial awareness get much better.

So, girls what are you waiting for?

Maggie Ayre is the UKs leading Fitness Coach for Teen Girls. Email for more information. As well as one-to-one and small group nutrition and fitness work with teens she has developed the 3G Program designed to be run at schools as part of the PE curriculum. She also offers mentoring for PE departments on how to re-engage teen girls with PE and has recently published her third book; “Nutrition for Exam Success – A Parent’s Guide” which is now available as a Kindle and paperback at Amazon.

Should Kids Lift Weights? By Brett Klika C.S.C.S.

“How old should my child be to lift weights?”

In working with a large number of youth, this is one of the more common questions I get from concerned parents. Urban legends of stunted growth, fractured growth plates, and prematurely inflated physiques have made parents, and society for that matter, reticent to involve youth in weight training.

The fact is, there is no scientific evidence to suggest that there is a perfect chronological age to start weight training. Research has not demonstrated any negative health consequences for weight training in youth, assuming proper movement is introduced and enforced concurrently with appropriate progressive increases in training load.

Despite what myths have been created around the subject, the current data suggests youth weight training injuries are primarily due to equipment accidents (weight falling on them, tripping in the weight room, etc.) or overzealous coaching rendering improper program introduction and progression.

Proper resistance training in youth has been demonstrated to improve fitness, favorably affect bone density, improve movement ability, and decrease the likelihood of athletic injury. Weight training is merely loaded movement.  More simply put, it’s challenged movement.  If basic movement becomes easy, we can challenge by adding something extra to continue to provide a training effect.

If a child can do a squat pattern perfectly for repetitions, holding a 2- pound medicine ball adds additional load.  Once they can overcome this load with proper movement, they can hold a 4- pound ball.  All semantic hubbub aside, this is weight training.  One doesn’t have to be lifting barbells and dumbells to be training with weight. If a child can’t do a squat pattern perfectly, adding additional load would make no sense.  They have demonstrated they do not need any additional challenge.  The movement pattern itself has provided enough load.

The critical questions in regards to youth and weight training become:
1.    Are they able to focus on the proper execution of task?
2.    Are they able to execute and repeat an unloaded task with proper movement and cadence?
3.    Are they mature and coordinated enough to respond to coaching cues?
4.    Are they interested in weight training?
5.    Is the person in charge of their program experienced and knowledgeable about movement and progression?

If the answer to any of the above is “no” it doesn’t matter the age of the human, they are not ready for weight training.  In this case, I would focus on merely learning how to move properly through a variety of movement patterns without additional challenge or load.

The best answer to “When should my child begin lifting weights” is “when they need to.”  When a child is able to focus on an organized training in which they execute and repeat all of the involved skills and drills correctly, add a challenge and slowly progress over time.

Brett Klika C.S.C.S., Director of Athletics at Fitness Quest 10 and founder of, is a world- renowned human performance specialist, motivational speaker, author, and educator. He uses this knowledge and experience to motivate individuals and audiences around the world through his writing, speaking, DVD’s, and personal correspondence. For more information and video on exercises, programs, and any other information on losing fat and creating the body you have always wanted, check out The Underground Workout Manual – Exercise and Fat Loss in the Real World at

New School Year, New Activity by Maggie Ayre

School semesters have built-in cycles, why not apply that to exercise as well? September and the start of the new school year is a new opportunity for taking positive action on fitness, healthy eating and general good health. It’s also an ideal opportunity for your child (and all family members) to try something new! With the wealth of afterschool clubs and outside school activities in every town, there’s plenty from which to choose.

The Olympics this summer have enthralled young and old alike with many having the chance to watch and learn about sports they had never seen, or even heard of before. Handball, BMX racing, diving, sailing, judo, rowing and basketball clubs are full to overflowing with young people wanting to “have a go.” With multi-sports, athletics and other just for fun clubs like dodgeball proving just as popular.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to encourage your children and teens to be active. There are so many different activities to choose from you’re sure to find one that appeals to them.

The great aspect is that next term it will be January and they’ll have the opportunity to renew and try yet a different activity. Will they keep going with existing activities or try something completely different again in 2013? Learning new skills and coordination that’s required with unaccustomed sports, meeting new friends, gaining a new coach mentor and being challenged by competition are all benefits to trying new activities. The days of playing the same old sports day in, day out, week in, week out are over.

This new school year help your children to discover the wealth of activities available to them and allow them to try a new activity each semester. You may have the next Olympic mountain biker or synchronised swimmer in the making.

Maggie Ayre is the UKs leading Fitness Coach for Teens. As well as one-to-one and small group nutrition and fitness work with teens (both online and face-to-face) she has developed the 3G Program designed to be run at schools as part of the PE curriculum. She also offers mentoring for PE departments on how to re-engage teen girls with PE and has recently published her third book; “Nutrition for Exam Success – A Parent’s Guide” which is now available as a Kindle and paperback at Amazon. She can be reached via,,