Sports and physical activity are important in children’s lives. Strength training, which is using free weights and weight machines to build muscle mass, has become an important part of training for sports. However, many parents wonder if strength training can cause damage to muscles as kids grow.
Is Strength Training Healthy for Children and Teens?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has a list of guidelines to ensure safety for your child during strength training.
1. Wait until your child is old enough.
If your child is old enough to participate in organized sports teams that require strength training as part of conditioning, they are most likely old enough to do light strength training.
2. Stick with light weights.
The goal for a child during strength training is much different than the goal for an adult. Light weights can improve a child’s posture, body composition and self-image without stunting growth.
3. Make sure workouts are supervised.
Having a qualified coach or trainer around will guarantee the child is safe, using the correct form and sticking with a routine that is healthy for their age.
4. Get a check up before strength training begins.
When strength training is involved, it’s important to consult a pediatrician before the workout routine begins.
Schedule a Check Up With Elmwood Pediatrics
Elmwood Pediatrics provides pediatric care to children throughout Rochester, NY. If your child is starting a strength training routine and you want a second opinion, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified pediatricians.