Taiwanese bodybuilding champion encourages elderly to take up weight training

Lifting weights excellent for staving off physical decline in later years, keeping mobile longer: Lee Pao-kang

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Lee Pao-kang

Lee Pao-kang (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A 65-year-old two-time bodybuilding champion will use his retirement to pitch the benefits of weight-training to elderly people.

Lee Pao-kang (李寶康), who sports gray hair and a white beard, is stronger than most young people. Lee was a contestant in the Taiwan President Cup Body-Building 10 years in a row, according to CNA.

He won titles two times, including this year in the Master Men’s Bodybuilding +58 division. The other eight times he was a runner-up.

Lee, who is a Taiwan Transportation Safety Board investigator, will retire in November. He said that after retirement, he will dedicate himself to encouraging the elderly to take up weight training to preserve their muscle strength, age healthily, and keep active as long as possible.

Over the years, the bodybuilder has had a habit of working out at the beginning of every day. As his retirement approaches, Lee said, he has become deeply aware of the benefits weight training has brought him.

If people can stave off being bedridden, it will not only improve their quality of life but ease the burden on their families, said Lee. Weight training, he believes, is the best way to maintain muscle strength and remain ambulatory.

He added that people passing the age of 50 will lose their muscle mass, which cannot be replenished simply by eating nutritious foods. Only through weight training can they build their muscle mass and make their muscles stronger, he said.

Pointing out the misconception that weight training is unsuitable for the elderly, he emphasized that it is important for people to start small and add weight gradually.


Lee Pao-kang (CNA photo)


(Take'sBodyGym video)