Is it a good idea?
Coffee and weight training will stunt your growth; these are two fallacies that have lived long past their due. Now the former was created to keep kids away from caffeine, because let’s be honest, they probably don’t need extra energy. However, I can’t quite figure out the latter. Could be for the safety of the children; the weight room can be a dangerous place. It was often said that the growth plates will become fractured due to the forces exerted. In a careful environment and safe manner, this is not a problem. In fact, no evidence exists that suggest weightlifting inhibits a child’s growth, according to Dr. Feigenbuam and Dr. Baraki. [Article posted at bottom]
|Read until the end to receive a special offer!
So What Can Children Do?
We will look at this in a couple of stages. The first stage is known as the Tanner Stage 4, essentially late stages of puberty. This generally happens between age 11 and 17, every child is different. At this age, a child has appropriate testosterone levels for recovery and progression.
At this age, a child can perform “normal adult” exercises. I say that with heavy quotations because any child can do any exercise, for the most part. But at this age, the child is able to do regular exercises and no major modifications are needed. It is important to not progress the child too fast.
Before a child reaches the Tanner Stage 4, exercise is still appropriate. There are numerous benefits that will be discussed later. The goal with this stage of exercise is to learn the movement patterns and cultivate a love of fitness and health. Often “beginner gains” comes from the body learning the patterns and creating a more efficient neural pathway.
In other words, if you walked through grass that is a foot tall, overtime the grass will get short and shorter in the path that you are walking and eventually become a dirt path. Now there is no resistance or need for you to high-step your way through the grass. Likewise, once the body creates a dirt path, the movement will be easier. Once the child begins to exercise with weights, a quicker progression will occur.
Benefits Of Children Lifting
3) This list comes not from a research article but anecdotal!
Where To Start
Getting started, it’s always the hardest part. For children who are not into the later stages of puberty, there are two very important things to focus on, form and technique! After that is mastered, weight can be slowly added. For children who are in the later stages of puberty, there are two very important things to focus on, form and technique! The difference is, these children are able to recover and progress quicker.
Children are able to perform cardiovascular training, speed/agility, plyometrics, weight training, and virtually anything else you can imagine! Just remember, safety first.
Anyone who shares or mentions this article will receive discounted training for any child under the age of 18!
Author: Alex Strahle
Personal Trainer at 517 Fitness
Alex earned a degree in Exercise Science at the University of Evansville and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the NSCA.
Saturday, April 7th | 11AM - 2PM