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Kids Shouldn't Lift? These Facts Will Change Your Mind for Good

Resistance Training isn't safe for children as it may stunt their growth or cause serious injury? Fact or fiction? If you think this is fact, here are some facts that will change your mind for good and have you wishing you had your kids lifting sooner rather than later.

Their Sport is More Dangerous

The impact sport has on children's bodies is far greater than what they'd ever experience doing resistance training. However, many parents will rush their children into sport yet believe they are not ready for resistance training. Some parents have their kids participating and regularly competing in multiple contact sports per year and at the same time. This logic is contradictory because if you think it's safe to have your children play and compete in sport, then its even safer and more beneficial to have them lifting weights in the gym.

Below is a list of sports and the number of sports-related hospitalisations in children aged 5-15 years old (2005-2013 and in NSW only). Some of these injuries included traumatic brain or spinal cord injuries. Notice resistance training isn't even on the list. In fact, as a result of these statistics, resistance training was recommended to children from the age of 6 to reduce injury rates and lessen the burden on the Australian health care system.

You're Just Setting Them Back

Strength plays a crucial role in early success in sport. Young champions have been shown to have similar levels in strength and power when compared to their adult counterparts. Strength also reduces the risk of injury which means they are less likely to miss out on days, weeks, months or even years of training their sport.

Other than the performance benefits, resistance training can help control weight, improve self-esteem and confidence.

Lifting Weights Facilitates Growth and Maturity

The most common belief is that kids shouldn't lift because it stunts their growth. It's the other way around, resistance training FACILITATES GROWTH. Watch the video below:

Does Your Child Need a Trainer?

If any injuries occur in the gym, it's most likely due to improper form and lifting weights that are just too heavy. With this in mind it's recommended you consult with a certified strength and conditioning coach/sports scientist with a university sports degree, especially if they'll playing a sport at the same time. The S&C/sports scientist will incorporate plyometric training, conditioning and other methods relevant to your child's style of play and sport. They can also help manage your child's overall training and recovery, as well as prevent overuse injuries and overtraining.

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