The Right Age to Start Weight Training

While what age is safe for a child to begin weight training is widely debated, there are competitions for boys as young as 13 years old. Is this too young? Like any debate that are arguments for both sides and some feel adamantly that their point of view is correct and any other opinion is wrong. Here I will detail some information on both sides of the fence so you can make the best decision as a parent.


One of the biggest arguments against weight training at a young age is that it can stunt the growth in a child. I could not find ay reputable source of information to indicate this to be true. The information I found related to growth in a prepubescent child participating in weight training noted that most of the growth that will occur will not be long lasting muscle growth rather than a large growth in usable strength. I other words you child most likely will not become absolutely shredded at the age of 12 but they will however develop a lot of usable strength through motor learning attributed to the motor system rather than pure muscle.


Some say that weight training a small child is unsafe as they will be handling relatively large weights that could seriously hurt them. While this is technically true, statistically speaking weight training a small child under correct and proper supervision is no more dangerous than any contact sport. So if you would be comfortable letting your child play basketball or football you shouldn’t really be concerned about weight training either. See more.

Differences in training

While weight training a child about 12-14 years old is not inherently more dangerous than other sports. It is important that you understand the differences between how they should be training based on their age. You should not have your child essentially doing a watered down version of adult exercises. A child does not have the same balance and motor skills as a full grown adult and the exercises you do have to take that fact into consideration. So for this age range you should focus on form and execution rather than weight and number of reps.

It is also not recommended that a child weight train for more than 2-3 30 minute sessions per week. Expert also recommend that you use free weights will small children rather than full machines as the machines are designed for the form that adults have had time to acquire and your child may not have that down yet and that error in form can cause serious injury.

As with any training you child’s ability to do certain things or train a certain amount of time per week with change and grow as they grow and as their skills improve.


Overall it is relatively safe to weight train a child that is 12-14 years old. Going any younger than that is really not recommended. It also would be a lot more difficult to weight train as the child would not have hit puberty yet in order to develop some of the hormone foundations to support gains in weight training. With proper supervision weight training that age group is just as safe as signing your kid up for the school basketball team. Get more details:

Please follow and like us: