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Advice for training 14 y/o son

graybass

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Oct 28, 2010
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I competed in PL for 22 years. I'm also a well-respected Personal Trainer/Sports Nutritionist/Certified in everything you can think of including Aerobics.
Here are the facts:
1. Never train a teenager for 1 rep max!! That will cause the ends of the long bones to fuse over prematurely. He could end up a lot shorter with other health problems.
Stay with higher rep sets. Lots of dumbbells for eye hand coordination.
2. I refuse to train anyone in power lifting. (Unless they are hell bent on PL) Every joint in my body is damaged. Help your son become a superior athlete, not a power lifter.
3. Heavy max lifts only after he stops growing 18-21 everyone is different.
4. Focus on the three main muscle groups, chest, legs, back.

I can't stress enough how heavy max lifts can damage your son permanently.
Please listen. I am a strength and conditioning coach at one of the most well-known hardcore gyms in America.
Continue the strength training but properly.
 

Performance Based

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There is a substantial amount of data regarding neural plasticity and CNS regulation amongst younger individuals that cross train.

The last thing I would recommend to a child is to pursue bodybuilding. Wrestling, swimming, track and field, power lifting, skills based tasks (football, soccer, baseball, etc.)

Have him find his niche and develop fully with a breadth of experiences to draw from.
 

Cerberus777

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Agree.

At this point it is up to MissSTK and her son. All you guy have given her tons
of advise but powerlifting, max reps at his age is a losing proportion. I think
we might all agree to agree on this.

I wish him nothing but the best and be injury free.

Agree. I wouldn't do anymore intense than 5x5 at his age if he wants to get into powerlifting as a sport. If he just wants to lift and be strong. I'd stay away from bench and even deadlifts, deads can come later after the spine is stronger/older
 

alfresco

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Agree. I wouldn't do anymore intense than 5x5 at his age if he wants to get into powerlifting as a sport. If he just wants to lift and be strong. I'd stay away from bench and even deadlifts, deads can come later after the spine is stronger/older
How about 3 x 20 if they chose to lift weights at all?

And you know my position on that. Obviously not popular
but this lad has time. Time is on his side. Lets not make
him regret it.
 

Cerberus777

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How about 3 x 20 if they chose to lift weights at all?

And you know my position on that. Obviously not popular
but this lad has time. Time is on his side. Lets not make
him regret it.

3x20 is great if he just wants to lift. I'd still use it as base to get form right before moving to 5x5 if he has his heart set on the sport of power lifting. It sounds like he wants to lift. It depends on why he wants to. I truly believe in letting kids live "dangerously" safely and chase dreams.
 

MissSTK

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Wow, y’all have given us some amazing advice and resources and I can’t thank you enough! I’ve told him that we will be breaking down our time at the gym to focus on the core lifts and mastering them with low/no weight (barbell only) until he nails down the movement for every rep with a 3x20. After he has perfected that, we can begin to add at slow increments and start thinking about moving to a 5x5. The bench has been his main focus for quite a while, and he has the technique down but he’s been focusing on raising the PR. He has reluctantly agreed to back off the weight considerably and we will be working on much lighter weight for the higher reps. (He only agreed because that advice came from y’all, not mom lol) As was mentioned above, peer pressure sucks, and he is essentially known for his strength at school, so if I ask him to give that one up he would just find a way to do it on his own which is too risky. He has a passion for the PL and competing, so I’m hoping I can use enough of the wisdom y’all have shared to help him do it as safe and smart as possible! His PL coach said that he won’t know the exact strategy he will be using for my son during practice until after their assessments, but he will keep me informed once they get those done next week. Does this sound like a good plan?Thank y’all again so much!!!!
 

BLang

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Awesome. I would just add that at least for a period of time, bodyweight exercises will pay huge dividends. The ability to move one's body through space is pretty underrated.
 

bellicose

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Nov 12, 2005
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352
I'd dump the trainer more than enough resources online to know form. Have him get strong, DC training or 5x5 . Thinking back at advice I'd tell myself at 14..

Intensity... train alone train hard...get strong...you get to chatting in the gym now your not there to train

Eat to grow not to move the scale up up and away, no one looks good carrying fat, don't set a goal weight not everyone needs to be 220,230+

Be consistent

Don't get injured, if you do heal. Don't me that tough guy who pushes through it and brags about his long list of injuries how he would be bigger if he never got hurt

It's a hobby, don't live in the gym it's not a career. Enjoy life, find a career, good money, don't chose a career in fitness choose a career that gives you stability
Great advice!
 

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