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Dead lifting, squats and 'cleans'...coach says yes, I wonder...

nettiK4137nettiK4137 Registered User Posts: 195 Junior Member
edited September 2013 in Athletic Recruits
...he is just 16, and I know you all have been there, too. Coaches push, medical perspective of injuries now or down the road....makes parents wonder.

What is your perspective. I am investigating another independent trainer to work with him on proper form, but talking to my chiro/sports medicine guy, they say they do not recommend ANY of their kids do dead lifts, squats (lunges ok?)....

How have y'all navigated this. Of course kiddo is stuck in the middle, and coaches don't get corrected easily.

HELP!!!!
Post edited by nettiK4137 on

Replies to: Dead lifting, squats and 'cleans'...coach says yes, I wonder...

  • ChicagoMamaChicagoMama Registered User Posts: 237 Junior Member
    For whatever it's worth, my son (football) does all those things as part of his team lifting program.
  • varskavarska Registered User Posts: 1,430 Senior Member
    Fear not the squat. With a proper warmup and excellent form I don't think there are any issues to worry about. Now plyometrics, on the other hand I would definitely use in moderation, if at all. Just my opinion.
  • 5amriser5amriser Registered User Posts: 149 Junior Member
    All those are ok for 16 year olds, providing that their forms are absolutely correct and the weights/reps are appropriate (and right for the particular sport). It's best to have a trainer who knows what he is doing working with your son to make sure that his forms are perfect. Injuries are mostly due to improper forms, not these weights exercises (especially for teenager boys who think they know what they are doing and have the heavier the better mentality).
  • TheGFGTheGFG Registered User Posts: 6,219 Senior Member
    The problem is that most high schools do not have weight room specialists, nor even phys. ed. teachers who know all that much about proper lifting form. Even if the school has someone knowledgeable, it's hard for anyone to supervise properly when there are a lot a rowdy kids cycling through the stations.

    We know of a number of athletes who have injured their backs at our school in the pre-season. In fact, my D started experiencing back pain this summer, and since I was aware that the lifting could be an issue at the school, I had her discontinue the team's strength and conditioning program. Football coaches and wrestling coaches probably know their stuff, but I wouldn't blindly trust any other coaches.

    Just our experience. YMMV.
  • 93tiger1693tiger16 - Posts: 492 Member
    Sixteen years old is a "safe" time to start lifting. You must have proper form though - this applies even if you're 26. Squats are definitely safe. I wouldn't start a kid on deadlifts or power cleans until he/she has been lifting for awhile and can exhibit good form. Those are high-risk exercises that carry high risk of injury of you do it wrong.

    When you're starting, you always want to be under guidance of a coach. My high school coach, who is now coaching at a college, taught me form and was there for me the whole time to correct my technique.
  • sosomenzasosomenza - Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    Dead lifts, no way. It's a technique for master lifters not for beginners. One needs to spend years building legs, back, neck and arms before dead lifting. Squats are okay, as long as the weight is low. Start with machines and then build to the real thing. GL
  • 93tiger1693tiger16 - Posts: 492 Member
    Start with machines and then build to the real thing.
    Noooo, don't start with machines! As per the advice of my football coach, machines create a dependency on the machine for form and balance. When kid transfer to actual weights, they can't balance the weight and without the support of the machine, their forms are horrible. I have seen this time and time again.

    There are also several exercises in which you cannot execute perfect form on a machine. For instance, the Smith machine is horrible for squats. Your knees go out and far exceed the plane of your feet. That's because the machine goes straight up and down and the only way you're going to be able to start is with your feet under the bar (else you wouldn't be able to support the weight to lift it off the rack). In a natural squat, your butt goes back and out and your knees don't surpass the plane of your feet. The strict up-down motion of the machine makes this form impossible. Almost tore my meniscus doing squats on the Smith machine.
  • StickerSticker Registered User Posts: 123 Junior Member
    My 14 year old freshman son attended his new highschool's strength and conditioning camp all summer -2 hours a day every day. They spent first two weeks on proper technique. Then mon, wed, fri lifting weights and tues, wed doing cardio and drills. Each kid had different weight limit based on size and ability and it was closely monitored by trainers. I know they did squats and cleans. Don't know about dead lifts. I did not hear about any injuries from weight training. My son has complained about back pain this week for first time and I swear its because of the 100 lb book sack he lugs around all day at school!
  • sosomenzasosomenza - Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    Noooo, don't start with machines! As per the advice of my football coach, machines create a dependency on the machine for form and balance. When kid transfer to actual weights, they can't balance the weight and without the support of the machine, their forms are horrible. I have seen this time and time again.

    Double noooo back, One needs to develop basic strength before doing squats with the real thing, that is assuming that one does not want to blow out his knees or back. BTW it's illogical to say that no balance with weakness is superior to no balance with strength. The key is to build up strength on the machines and then drop down in weight when starting the real thing.
  • varskavarska Registered User Posts: 1,430 Senior Member
    The concerns with learning the squat on a smith machine are 1) it forces the bar to move in an unnatural straight line and 2) you can build strength in the prime movers without learning to activate the stabilizers. I think its safest to learn the movement under the close supervision of an experienced coach and using minimal weight, even an empty bar, and gradually increase...learning to recruit the stabilizers from day 1.
  • 93tiger1693tiger16 - Posts: 492 Member
    ^sound advice. There is actually nothing you can do better on a machine than on free weights.
  • TheGFGTheGFG Registered User Posts: 6,219 Senior Member
    To add to my earlier a caution: I just learned that a friend's son, who is a high school football player, was diagnosed with an arthritis type of shoulder injury from lifting weights. The orthopedist said he sees this sort of injury a lot because teenagers are still growing and their bones simply aren't mature to handle a lot of weight. You really need to know what you're doing.
This discussion has been closed.