Strongman Training for Youth

by Rick Howard, MEd, CSCS,*D
NSCA Coach April 2014
Vol 3, Issue 2


Strength and conditioning coaches can safely and effectively integrate strongman training into youth strength and conditioning programs by following established programming guidelines and available research recommendations.

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This article originally appeared in NSCA Coach, a quarterly publication for NSCA Members that provides valuable takeaways for every level of strength and conditioning coach. You can find scientifically based articles specific to a wide variety of your athletes’ needs with Nutrition, Programming, and Youth columns. Read more articles from NSCA Coach »



1. Baker, D. Strongman training for large groups of athletes. Journal of Australian Strength and Conditioning 16: 33, 2008. 
2. Bennett, S. Using “strongman” exercises in training. Strength and Conditioning Journal 30(3): 42-43, 2008.
3. Bergeron, M, Mountjoy, M, Armstrong, N, Chia, M, Côté, J, Emery, C, et al. International Olympic Committee consensus statement on youth athletic development. British Journal of Sports Medicine 49(13): 843-851, 2015.
4. Faigenbaum, AD, Kraemer, WJ, Blimkie, C, Jeffreys, I, Micheli, LJ, Nitka, M, and Rowland, TW. Youth resistance training: Updated position statement paper from the National Strength and Conditioning Association. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 29(5 suppl): S60-S79, 2009.
5. Hardy, LL, King, L, Espinel, P, Cosgrove, C, and Bauman, A. NSW Schools Physical Activity and Nutrition Survey (SPANS) 2010: Full Report. Sydney, Australia: NSW Ministry of Health; 2010.
6. Kite, R, Lloyd, R, and Hamill, B. British Weight Lifting Position Statement: Youth weightlifting. Retrieved March 2016 from http://
7. Lloyd, R, Faigenbaum, A, Stone, M, Oliver, J, Jeffreys, I, Moody, J, et al. Position statement on youth resistance training: The 2014 international consensus. British Journal of Sports Medicine 48: 498-505, 2014.
8. Lubans, DR, Morgan, PJ, Cliff, DP, Barnett, LM, and Okely, AD. Fundamental movement skills in children and adolescents: Review of associated health benefits. Sports Medicine 40(12): 1019-1035, 2010.
9. Myer, G, Faigenbaum, A, Ford, K, Best, T, Bergeron, M, and Hewitt, T. When to initiate integrative neuromuscular training to reduce sports-related injuries in youth? Current Sports Medicine Report 10(3): 155-166, 2011.
10. Sheppard, JM, and Tripplett, NT. Program design for resistance training. In: Haff, GG, and Tripplett, NT (Eds.), Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning. (4th ed.) Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics; 442, 2016.
11. Winwood, P, Cronin, J, Posthumus, L, Finalson, S, Gill, N, and Keogh, J. Strongman versus traditional resistance training effects on muscular function and performance. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 29(2): 429-439, 2015.
12. Winwood, P, Hume, P, Cronin, J, and Keogh, J. Retrospective injury epidemiology of strongman athletes. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 28(1): 28-42, 2014.
13. Winwood, P, Keogh, J, and Harris, N. Interrelationships between strength, anthropometrics, and strongmen performance in novice strongman athletes. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 26(2): 513-522, 2012.

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Rick Howard, DSc, CSCS,*D, RSCC*E

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Rick Howard earned his Doctorate in Health Promotion and Wellness from Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. He is an Associate Professor i ...

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