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Is there an age limit for whole body vibration exercise?

01st November 2016
is there an age limit for whole body vibration exercises

Exercising has no age limit, but is age-specific, meaning that some types of exercise are more recommended for people in certain age groups. Weight lifting for example is not the best choice for kids or teens, but is an excellent physical activity for adults, and even for seniors, as long as the loads are adapted to one’s fitness level.

Same goes for cardio and aerobic exercises: some are more suitable for teens, others are recommended to adults, and others are excellent for seniors. But there are also some physical activities, such as swimming for example, which are suitable for all age groups, and whole body vibration seems to be in this category too.

In today’s article, we’ll take a look at some studies that show that vibration machine exercises are safe and effective in people of different ages. Hopefully these will encourage you to give whole body vibration a try, if you’re still reluctant or insecure when it comes to this form of training.

Ideally, one should start practising sports and exercising during childhood, but even if you’ve never practised any sport and your lifestyle has been rather sedentary until now, studies show you can still benefit from exercising.

Doing physical activities for at least 30 minutes a day can help reverse some of the effects of inactivity and can help you strengthen your muscles and bones, improve your balance and posture and decrease the risk of ailments, as exercise has immunity-boosting effects.

So whether you want to strengthen your body, to get leaner or to relieve the tension from your body and relax after a tiring day, whole body vibration can be a good way to start exercising, regardless of your age.

Benefits of whole body vibration exercises in teens, adults and seniors

It’s very unlikely to hear any health professional or doctor recommending whole body vibration to children as their regular or main form of physical activity, as kids should be active and practice sports if they’re able to move normally. However in some cases WBV can be a viable solution, especially in kids who have impaired motor function, or cannot practice conventional exercises for various reasons.

There isn’t enough scientific evidence to support the regular use of vibration exercises in kids, but the available research suggest some special categories of patients under 18 years that can benefit from WBV therapy.

For example, it’s been shown by several studies that in kids with cerebral palsy, WBV can improve mobility and the bone density, and in kids with Down syndrome, WBV training has helped improve body composition. Also, in children with cystic fibrosis, this form of therapy was found to be efficient in increasing leg strength and power, while in those with severe motor impairments, vibration machine therapy was found to improve mobility.

But it’s not just children with impairments who can benefit from whole body vibration. In adults, exercises performed on a vibration machine can improve the bone mineral density of the spine, improve balance and muscle endurance of the lower leg, improve flexibility and contribute to a healthier body composition.

Vibration machine exercises can be beneficial for untrained adults, as well as for amateur and professional athletes, and can help people with various conditions improve their strength, stamina, body fat percentage, mobility and balance.

Vibration therapy was proven to improve cognitive performance in people with ADHD, to improve muscle strength and jump height in untrained healthy adults, when incorporated in a resistance training routine, and to improve the walking function in people with spinal cord injury.

All these effects have been experienced by adults of different ages and fitness levels. And this is not all; seniors who want to stay active can also add whole body vibration to their weekly routine, as WBV therapy is considered safe in elders and can be used both for therapeutic and fitness purposes.

In patients aged 50+ years, WBV has been found to reduce lower back pain, improve the knee muscle strength, speed of movement and jump performance, improve balance and lower body strength, decrease the fall risk and improve the health-related quality of life.

As you can see, there isn’t an age limit for whole body vibration exercises. Still, to get the most of your physical activities, you should always try to vary your workouts and practice both strength and cardio exercises, regardless of the machines or equipment you choose to use.

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