Workouts For Teens

September 28, 2009 by  
Filed under The Fitness Bug

teen-body-building

Over the past few weeks I have been assisting many teens (under the age of 16) on how they should workout, and the lack of knowledge some of them have does amaze me. However, I was that young once (in my mind I still am :)) and I do remember what it was like. One thing I did know for sure though, was that you shouldn’t be hitting free weights (power lifting) or supplements before the age of 16. So to drum it into the mind of any teenager that reads this,

‘What you don’t know will kill you’

Well… not literally, but possibly. That applies to many things in life, but lets stick weight training and exercise.

Whether you are a teen or you have a nephew, brother, son or someone you know that is one, they will most likely be inspired to workout. But until they reach the age of 18, or even 21, the exercises that they perform in their workouts will and should be different compared to those performed in an adult’s workout.

For myself it was at age 16 when I started to workout, but I made a pact to myself not to start high intensity resistance training until I was 17-18 years old, and there was a good reason for this.

Prevent Stunt Growth

The reality is that the skeletal structure of the younger person is likely to still be growing and any teenager really doesn’t want to interrupt that growth process. It may lead to being short, or under developed in terms of adult size and frame. Even worse, you may just carry on growing, and if you become a skyscraper (like me 🙂 ), then you are likely to develop stretch marks.

Avoid-stretchmarks-gain-weight-healthilystretch marks-avoid-gain-weight-healthily

There is nothing wrong with being short at all, but you might as well find out if that is how you will be once you reach the age of 21. If you then find that you are to be tall then the girls will love you for your height too. 😉

I was always tall growing up but I still didn’t want to interrupt my natural growth, so I waited until 17 years old before lifting heavy weights. It was good that I did wait, as many other ‘shooting stars’ that I knew in and outside of school started to early and without a doubt, I am certain that doing so stunted their growth.

Ok, point taken, I’m a teen, what should I do?

In terms of building strength or some weight gains, teens should stick to bodyweight workouts, performing many of the exercises that I have recently covered such as

  • Sit-ups
  • Leg lifts
  • Crunches

Use an exercise ball to maximize your ab building potential with the above exercises.

  • Press-ups
  • Chin ups
  • Pull-ups
  • Leg raises

Use the Iron Gym Xtreme door chin up bar to perform the above exercises effectively.

  • Knee jumps
  • Mahler body blasters
  • Weight-less squats
  • Lunges

Swimming, running and cycling are good moderate intensity cardio exercises, but are also good for building functional strength. Climbing trees is also another good activity to include in your workouts.

You could always take up activities such as martial arts to keep your muscles and strength gains active. Martial arts will not only be good for improving body strength, but will be good for improving flexibility too. The best part of taking up martial arts is that it will set you up well for your knowledge in self-defence with a strong mind set for discipline and improved attitude.

Overall, as a teenager, your goal should be to only increase your strength and build the ‘ripped’ look and of course, general fitness. Be patient and wait it out for 2-3 years before you start bulking up and pumping those heavy weights. Time will fly after reading this, and believe me, when that time comes you will thank me for it.

Are you a teenager?

If not, how old were you when you began to lift weights?

See you in the comments

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