The speaker at our April 26 lunch meeting was Michael Brandson, an educator and personal coach at the Northwest Community Hospital Wellness Center.  Michael spoke about the impact of aging (sarcopenia), and the benefits that postural awareness and resistance training can have on reducing the effects of aging.  The physical effects of aging start at age 24 and accelerate quickly, especially after age 50.  After age 50, aging-related risk factors include obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and deterioration of leg and hip musculature.  However, with resistance training (the medicine against aging) many of the risks and health problems associated with aging are preventable and reversible.  Recent studies have shown that a longer lifespan is also a benefit of resistance training.  With the impact of aging on our musculature and metabolism, focus bracing in our posture is increasingly important.  If certain critical joints or body segments are not stable, movement becomes difficult and potentially harmful or impossible. 


To improve and control your posture, Michael suggested a bracing sequence, in which you straighten your feet on the floor, squeeze your butt cheeks, inhale then exhale, draw in your navel, and brace your abs; then press out your chest, press your shoulders back and favor your elbows in, place your head up and back and tuck your chin in; then breathe diaphragmatically, with rhythm.  Michael’s essential resistance training exercises are the bridge, plank, squat (or leg press), row, chest press (or push-up), step up, lat pull down (or pull up), lunge, shoulder press, and the dead lift.  Michael called us all to engage in a wellness action plan that includes postural awareness/bracing, and flexibility and balance training every day, cardio training five days per week for 35 minutes per day, strength training at least two days per week.


For more information you can reach Michael at 847-618-3647 or by email at