Raising the Bar: Why Strength Training is a Safe Bet for Kids

Think lifting weights is only for adults? It’s time to lift the veil on this fitness fallacy and empower our kids through strength training.

In the landscape of youth sports and physical activity, weightlifting has often been demonized, or benched due to concerns about safety and the potential impact on growth. However, this perspective is being challenged by emerging research and a better understanding of exercise science. Let’s clean up the misconceptions and press the facts about why lifting weights is not only safe for children but can be incredibly beneficial.

1. Understanding Growth Plates: The myth that lifting weights harms young developing bodies centers around growth plates—areas of developing tissues at the ends of long bones. The worry is that resistance training could damage these plates, affecting growth. However, numerous studies show that with proper technique and supervision, strength training has no more risk to growth plates than other sports.

2. Research Speaks Volumes: Contrary to old-school thinking, research from leading organizations like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Strength and Conditioning Association endorses structured and supervised strength training for kids. It can enhance strength, improve motor skills, and even protect against sports-related injuries.

3. Building More Than Muscles: Strength training can instill a sense of discipline, improve self-esteem, and teach goal-setting. These are life skills that transcend the gym walls, impacting a child’s development in profound ways.

4. Strength Training vs. Weightlifting: It’s essential to differentiate between competitive weightlifting and strength training with weights. Kids aren’t mini-adults and shouldn’t be treated as such. Instead, they should engage in a strength training program that focuses on technique, form, and gradual progression. This is exactly what our CrossFit Kids program is founded upon.

5. The Role of Professional Supervision: A certified trainer with experience in youth fitness is crucial. This ensures exercises are age-appropriate and acknowledges the individual physical and psychological stages of children.

6. The Positive Ripple Effect: Regular physical activity, including lifting weights, has been shown to correlate with healthier lifestyle choices in kids. Active children are more likely to become active adults, reducing the risk of health issues like obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Closing Thought: The narrative that strength training is dangerous for children is outdated and unsupported by current evidence. With the right approach, lifting weights can be a game-changer for a child’s physical health and personal growth.

Ready to Get Started

If you’re ready for your child to join a group of like-minded individuals who want to see them become the best version of their youthful selves, then come check us out at CrossFit Fringe. Start from wherever you are, and let our expert team of coaches guide you on your journey to a fitter, healthier, and happier you.