When I was a personal trainer at a large health club, middle age men would often ask me what exercise they should do, if there were only one exercise for them to do, that would be the absolute best for weight loss, strength and overall fitness and health.
My response every time: deadlift.
Whether a middle age man is new to exercise, is a “90 pound weakling” or wants to lose a lot of weight, has never been athletic or even has diabetes, the deadlift is the ideal exercise for him to do.
For starters, it can be performed in one’s house and requires only a barbell that can be loaded with plates, and of course, the plates. This won’t take up much room. The bar can be stored upright in a corner against a wall, and the plates can be stacked off to the side.
For men who already have a gym membership, most (especially middle age and over) never do deadlifts. I have clearly observed this over the years at any gym I’ve ever trained at.
Why is the deadlift the single best exercise for middle age men?
Anyone can do the deadlift. Though spot-on form is extremely important to maintain safety, the deadlift is one of those exercises that even the most out-of-shape man can do.
It’s not like a chin-up, pushup or dip, in which beginners cannot do. The deadlift consists of picking a barbell off the floor that’s in front of you, and straightening your body, keeping your arms straight. The completed motion has you standing upright, holding the barbell with straight arms hanging in front. You then set it down. That’s all. Just pick up, straighten, set back down. And you do this for repetitions, usually 8 to 10.
No balancing, no standing on wobbly surfaces, no jumping or running. You stand in one spot the entire time, bend over, grab the bar, then straighten your body to get the bar off the floor.
The most out of shape person can do this. The variable is the weight of the bar. Beginners should use a light bar so that they can practice perfecting form.
This exercise is the single best for middle age men for its strength training benefits.
The deadlift works virtually the entire body at once. This means expeditious gains in muscle and joint strength, plus a lot of fat-burning. Developing strength with this movement will have significant carry-over to the activities of daily living.
This exercise primarily targets the entire backside of the body, and we all know how important it is to have a strong, durable back. (It also strengthens the abs, arms and shoulders.)
If you have back pain due to de-conditioned soft-tissue structures, the deadlift (with a proper training approach) will correct this problem.
Very overweight men are often concerned about exercise performance and find it daunting to use cardio equipment. The deadlift is exceedingly superior to burning fat when compared to lengthy sessions on cardio equipment.
This is the single best exercise for even obese middle age men because it’s done in sets that last about 30 seconds each, and like any multi-joint strength training movement, the entire working portion for that particular movement lasts only several minutes.
Though I don’t recommend that middle age men choose only one exercise to do, the point I’m making is that the deadlift is so effective, that this would certainly qualify as “the single best exercise” for middle age men.
Burn lots of fat with the deadlift