Posted by Jackelope
Honestly, as young as you are you should separate the strength and conditioning for right now.
At your age there's things you have to think about considering that you're not done growing yet. Weight lifting (especially heavy) can have a serious affect on the development of your body in terms of height and stature. How tall are you? What do you weigh? Would you like to get taller or stay the same? How much do you want to weigh for MMA competition? What styles do you consider training in?
Every style has a certain body type that naturally works a little better. With hard work ethic you can overcome certain difficulties your body type may encounter with a style, but some are just naturally inclined to do better with say short arms and legs vs. long arms and legs. While you're young and if you know what you want to do you should address that. Take a look at wrestlers for example- short, stocky, strong. I can personally vouch for the fact that all of that hard work changes your body style. Up until I quit wrestling my junior year I was short and stocky. Now I'm long and lanky because I didn't stop growing until I was 21 years old. Had I kept wrestling I'd probably still be short and stocky considering withina year after I'd quit I grew 8 inches taller.
So if you want shorter and more powerful muscles you should go with the heavy lifting. If you want longer and more lean muscles you should do more plyometric type workouts and worry about your conditioning/cardio for right now. Not saying anything you do can make you grow an extra 5 inches taller or anything, but there are things you can do to mitigate how short you end up being.
I may be totally wrong here but isnt Danny going to be a junior in high school? I know when I was his age I spent at least an hour a day in the weight room mon-fri. Pretty much year round and this was almost 20 years ago. Although he probably has not stopped growing, I would think hes able to fully take advantage of the excess of testosterone,and can build muscle while still growing. I saw plenty of other JV footballl and wrestlers grow 6+ inches from 9th to 12th grade all the while squatting,benching,cleaning,deadlifting,all the big lifts. To discourage this kid from lifting is fooloish. I mean to say that wrestling can affect your predermined genetic bodytype is misleading at best. If you had played soccer do you think your legs would have grown longer faster? But since you wouldnt have used your arms,they would have shrunk?? Your theory just doesnt make sense to me. Danny ,follow Rippetoes it has worked for thousands of people. Ask a coach(perhaps your wrestling coach if you want to wrestle)what they would suggest. Many high schools were I live employ strength coaches. Jackalope I hate to say this but your growth wasnt stunted any by wrestling,unless you used REALLY unhealthy methods of making weight. As far as fast twitch/slow twitch muscle fiber,thats a genetic issue as well. It is good to utilize cardio.plyo and strength training for all around power,strength,condition and health. this is an article by Tom Venuto who developed a great program for us older folks,very insightful...
Weight Lifting For Kids?
Lifting weights is useful for growing muscle, assisting in fat loss, boosting metabolism, and increasing strength - but should young teenagers be weight lifting?
I believe the answer is yes - with appropriate education and management. Sadly most education comes from magazines touting supplements and even steroid use. The issue of childhood obesity and possible solutions must be debated - and resistance training is a piece of the puzzle.
Tom Venuto (co-author of Fit Over 40) offers these comments:
a) Competent supervision is important, especially in the early stages of weight training - especially with free weights.
b) Emphasis should be placed on proper form and good lifting
technique so children develop good habits at an early age
and get started the right way.
c) Weight lifting will not "stunt" the growth of teenagers,
that is a myth. However, extremely heavy lifting is unnecessary
and might be detrimental in pre-adolescent teens, which is
why the emphasis in young children should be on "activity"
and "exercise" and not just lifting heavy weights.
d) Children should be educated about supplements and drugs.
It's as difficult to unlearn bad info about taking pills
and powders as it is to unlearn improper exercise form.
It's also difficult to undo the conditioning young people
are getting from the magazine ads. Most bodybuilding
and fitness magazines these days are owned by supplement
companies who push products without scientific merit, and
some actually encourage steroid use. There are "How to take
steroids" columns in at least two major magazines that
any teenager can pick up at any newstand (and many more
on the web).
e) Children should be educated about nutrition and healthy
food choices. For example; cut back on processed and refined
foods, fried foods, white sugar, white flour, soft drinks,
candy, fast food and so on. Trade all that junk for natural
lean proteins like egg whites, fish and chicken, and natural
carbs like fruits, vegetables and unrefined whole grains.
f) Most of the same healthy nutrition guidelines discussed
in Fit Over 40 apply to children. However,
I don't recommend extremely restrictive diets for children or
teenagers, including low carb or bodybuilding competition diets.
Instead, I recommend increasing activity to burn off the fat
(including sports and recreational activites like biking,
hiking, etc), strength training to build muscle.