Is It Safe to Lift Weights?

Is it safe for a 15-year-old guy to lift weights?
Shawn*

With the proper precautions, it's generally safe for teens to strength train. Start out slowly to give your body time to get used to lifting, and make sure there's someone there to supervise when you're working out. Take at least a day off between sessions, and include warm-up and cool-down periods.

It's recommended that before beginning a new sport or activity you get checked out by your doctor. Some medical conditions require special precautions before a person begins exercising regularly. Before strength training, you also should ask a physical education instructor, coach, or fitness trainer for advice on how often and how much to lift.

Because you're still growing, it's easy to overdo it and strain or damage your bones, joints, and tendons. If you're working out and something doesn't feel right, you feel pain, or you hear or feel a "pop," stop what you're doing and have it checked out immediately.

Reviewed by: Larissa Hirsch, MD
Date reviewed: July 2009

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*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.

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